Friday 18 October, 2019

Gov't agencies prepared for weather system

Government agencies are at this time signalling their readiness to deal with any issues that may arise from the passage of the weather system scheduled to pass over Trinidad and Tobago tonight.

At a press conference held a short while ago, representatives of various agencies said everything is in place and all systems are a go.

Captain Neville Wint, Deputy CEO of the Organisation of Disaster Preparedness and Management (ODPM) said shelters are open for those who need it and sandbags are being distributed in Port-of-Spain.

He said Air Traffic services out of Trinidad and Tobago and Grenada have been closed until tomorrow.

He assured that contrary to rumours on social media, none of the utilities will be curtailing services. In fact, he said, the Water and Sewerage Authorities (WASA), the Trinidad and Tobago Electricity Commission (T&TEC) and the Telecommunications Services of Trinidad and Tobago (TSTT) have all activated their preparedness systems.

Wint said there are four damage assessment teams on standby to do assessments in Trinidad and Tobago following the system. The Fire service has also activated their response mechanisms. He said the needs of the special population have been considered and those people are asked to check the ODPM site for information.

“All respective first responding agencies are prepared," said Wint, who instructed citizens to respect the72-hourr protocol. He asked citizens to check the ODPM site to see what you are required to do after 72 hours of the passage of a system.

Representatives from the Meteorological Office, Trinidad and Tobago Police Service, Regional Health Authorities and the Ministry of Rural Development and Local Government spoke at the press conference.

Here are the updates from each agency.

TTPS

All officers have been called out to report to their respective divisions. There will be intensified patrols in the event of an electricity outage.  Calls to 999 numbers will be directed to all divisions. Trauma kits have been placed in all vehicles.

Met Office

Hurricane Hunters have been deployed and at 5 pm there will be an update on whether or not the system has developed into a Tropical Storm. The system is expected to affect the North East portion of Trinidad the most.

Local Government

All 14 Corporations have mobilised resources. Contractors involved in national clean up are on standby and equipment is in position especially in rural areas in the event of landslips and other occurrences.

RHAs

Health centres will be available 24 hours. Elective surgeries and extended hours have been suspended until the system has passed. Ambulances have been deployed to different regions for easier access to those who need it. 

There will be another update at 7 am.

All citizens are advised to check www.odpm.gov.tt for updates.

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