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  • The Office of Disaster Preparedness & Emergency Management (ODPEM), has received reports from the the Meteorological Service that Tropical Storm Matthew was formed near the eastern Caribbean this morning.
  • The Meteorological Service has also indicated that Maximum sustained winds are near 95 km/h with higher gusts and gradual strengthening is forecast during the next couple of days and Matthew could become a hurricane by Friday.

Press Release # 1
Tropical Storm Matthew

Issued on: Tuesday September 28, 2016 at 2:15 p.m.

The Office of Disaster Preparedness & Emergency Management (ODPEM), has received reports from the the Meteorological Service that Tropical Storm Matthew was formed near the eastern Caribbean this morning. Reports are that the centre of Matthew will move through the Windward Islands during the next couple of hours, and move over the southern and central Caribbean Sea through Friday. Thereafter, it could move closer to Jamaica and pose a direct threat to the island.

The Meteorological Service has also indicated that Maximum sustained winds are near 95 km/h with higher gusts and gradual strengthening is forecast during the next couple of days and Matthew could become a hurricane by Friday.

The ODPEM has since alerted all Agencies and Parish Disaster Committees. Emergency managers, responders and volunteers are placed on standby.
The Public is asked to continue monitoring the radio for further information pertaining to Tropical Storm Matthew. As we are in the peak of the Hurricane season, the ODPEM is advising the public to take the following precautions in the event the Island is impacted by a Hurricane.

1. Check that the galvanized or zinc sheeting on the roof of your house is properly fastened, check hurricane shutters, hooks, latches and repair where necessary.
2. Keep in stock extra plastic bags and sheets of plastic to prevent important documents, paintings, equipment and furniture from getting wet.
3. Trim trees that touch power lines or hang over the house and other buildings.
4. Make sure that emergency cooking facilities such as coal stoves are in good working condition.
5. Store extra food, especially things that can be eaten without cooking or which need very little preparation.
6. Have emergency supplies in your home to include water boots, raincoats, flashlights, batteries, portable radio, kerosene lamps, matches and the necessary medical supplies.

The ODPEM will continue to monitor the situation.

“Disasters Do Happen … Be Prepared”

Contact: Delmares White, Director, Information Officer Dwhite@odpem.org.jm 399-1627