NEMO Speaks On Disaster Mitigation Efforts

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Prolonged rainfall brought on by Friday’s Tropical Wave and an all weekend upper level trough resulted in minor surface water flooding and land slippage in various areas on island  Sunday 1st November.

According to Saint Lucia Meteorological Services, the most precipitation occurred Saturday, registering 40.3 millimeters at Hewanorra and 72.3 millimeters at George F.L. Charles Airports.

According to reports from the various District Disaster Committees to the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO), there was flooding in the capital, and parts of Laborie, Vieux Fort, Dennery, Gros Islet and Babonneau with the latter experiencing some infrastructural damage.

A siltation removal exercise was undertaken at the Marc Bridge on Sunday after some flooding in that area also. Landslides were reported in Louvette, Upper Aux Lyons and the most significant- the La Caye Road in Dennery which was quickly cleared up by authorities. Ministry of Infrastructure crew also cleared a fallen tree from the Millennium Highway, Sunday. Director of the National Emergency Management Organization, Dorine Gustave commends the quick response of the Ministry of Infrastructure over the weekend.

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“As soon as the reports came in we would call the Ministry of Infrastructure , and we’d get the report that it was already cleared. They were on the ball for assessing the areas and getting rid of any obstruction on the roads, and if they were any homes that were under threat they were already there. They did a fantastic job during the heavy rains to ensure that persons were safe and that places were accessible as much as possible.”

Gustave attributes mitigation exercises at various locations island wide to the reduced effects of this upper level trough as compared to previous devastating weather systems. She did however indicate that some attention need be given to Dennery South.

“The flooding in Richfond, and the perennial flooding in the village is something we need to work on. It happens every time there is heavy rain and the people in the village suffer quite a bit due to it.”

Contending with the Covid-19 epidemic during the Atlantic Hurricane Season, NEMO remains conscious of the potential for a multi-hazard impact at this time. Gustave assures that procedures are in place with District Disaster Committees for this scenario.

“We have pre-positioned supplies at the district level which are placed with district disaster committees. We also have a supply of over 200 mattresses from the US Embassy, so theses are positioned in the event there is need to open shelters and to assist persons who are impacted also.”

Anyone affected by the weekend weather system in need of assistance can call NEMO at 452.3802 or 452.2126.

Headline photo caption: Weekend flooding in Dennery

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Editorial Staff
Editorial Staff
Our Editorial Staff at St. Lucia Times is a team publishing news and other articles to over 200,000 regular monthly readers in Saint Lucia and in over 150 other countries worldwide.

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