• JIS News

    At least 40 persons housed in shelters in St. Catherine, as a result of rains associated with Tropical Depression #16, are making attempts to return to their homes.
    Parish Disaster Coordinator for St. Catherine, Patricia Lewis, told JIS News that the residents, including children, have been moving between their homes and the shelters, since the rains drove them from their homes.
    “They are to and from the shelters, so this number fluctuates,” she said, adding that they have been staying at the Shiloah Basic School and the Ensom City Community Centre.
    Miss Lewis said that staff from the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, the Jamaica Red Cross and the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM), have been attending to the needs of the residents, who were provided with blankets, cots and plastic sheeting.
    According to the parish coordinator, some six shelters in the parish were activated and shelter managers are on stand-by.
    She said that personnel from the Emergency Operation Centre, activated last evening at the St. Catherine Parish Council, were currently monitoring the situation.
    The Parish Coordinator said that the Coburne Gully in Old Harbour, which had overflowed its bank, affected communities in Nightingale Grove, Bushy Park and in Vineyard.
    She added that staff from the Poor Relief Department were doing assessments of persons affected by the rains.
    “Within another day or so, that will be intensified,” she added.
    The Parish Coordinator urged residents in flood-prone areas in the parish to listen to the weather reports and updates, and be ready to move quickly to safety.
    “If you are in a low-lying area, we ask that you monitor the situation so that you can go to higher ground if the circumstances warrant,” she cautioned.