Potential Impacts Shift as National Emergency Operations Center (NEOC) Urges Caution
Tropical storm conditions, associated with the passage of Tropical Storm Ida through the Cayman Islands area are expected to begin impacting the Eastern Districts of Grand Cayman around 11p.m. tonight.
Gusts of tropical storm force winds may potentially reach across the island the National Weather Service (NWS) officials noted this evening. The change in the forecast impact is the result of a new more northerly track for Tropical Storm Ida which will see tropical storm force winds reaching Little Cayman at midnight.
Emphasising the unpredictability of storms, Deputy Governor Hon. Franz Manderson, who chairs the NEOC, urged members of the public to exercise caution as they complete their preparedness measures and head home.
“All three Cayman Islands are experiencing wet conditions and increasing wind speeds and I want to emphasise to everyone the importance of heading home and be inside before dark if you are able. We all need to exercise caution while on the road and while we wait for the storm to pass, and to stay tuned to local channels for any further changes that may happen overnight,” the Deputy Governor urged.
Mr Manderson pointed to the impact of Tropical Storm Grace last week, as an example of how quickly storms can change their path and their intensity.
Three hurricane shelters have opened on Grand Cayman including: Sir John A. Cumber Primary School in West Bay, the Red Cross Building on Huldah Avenue and Clifton Hunter High School in Frank Sound. The primary school and high school are accessible to persons with disabilities and Clifton Hunter is an animal shelter.
Aston Rutty Centre on Cayman Brac is now open as is the Public Works Department Building on Little Cayman.
Updated local weather information is expected from the National Weather Service at 7p.m. The National Emergency Operations Council will also share any new information on its response to T.S. Ida following its 7.30 p.m. meeting. Flood and marine Warnings remain in effect for the Cayman Islands.
Hazard Management Cayman Islands also offers some preparedness tips to members of the public. Residents should:
- secure any debris from their yards that can fly around and damage property.
- secure a three-day supply of drinking water, non-perishable food and necessary supplies.
- be prepared for any loss of power.
- secure a battery or solar powered radio with them so that they can stay informed even if the power goes out.
Members of the public are urged to exercise extreme caution on the roads while completing their preparations. They are also reminded to avoid shorelines and refrain from non-essential travel as soon as they are able after 6p.m.
Submitted by: National Emergency Operations Center (NEOC, CIG)