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Widespread disruption amid overnight rain

Residents clearing drains in Road Town this morning. Photo Credit: Mark Vanterpool

Several communities have been left without electricity, some businesses have kept their shutters down, a community meeting on Jost Van Dyke has been postponed, and a number of roads were made impassable during torrential overnight rainfall associated with a tropical wave affecting the British Virgin Islands (BVI).

The Department of Disaster Management (DDM) also announced that a flash flood warning was in effect until midday today, July 13. “A flash flood warning means that moderate to major flooding is imminent or occurring in low lying and flood prone areas.”

The department also saw it fit to issue an appeal for persons to stay off the road until mid-day. “Members of the public are asked to stay off the roads until 12 noon to allow the Public Works Department to conduct clean up operations as landslides and rock falls have occurred,” it said.

Works minister Mark Vanterpool, in the meantime, posted photos on his Facebook page, showing persons cleaning drains and roadways affected by the downpour in his constituency.

“Crews are out clearing up the areas affected by the heavy overnight rains. Please be careful as you travel on the roads today, and I encourage the clean-up crews to be safe as well,” he said, adding that some of his constituents did not wait on Government to take action in the Road Town area.

Works minister Mark Vanterpool in his constituency

The National Parks Trust, in the meantime, has declared that all national parks and mooring systems are closed. “All national parks will remain closed until the National Parks Trust has issued an all clear.”

The BVI Electricity Corporation (BVIEC) also was affected badly. At publication time, it announced: Power restoration has been completed except in the following areas: A portion of the Ridge from Great Mountain to Long Swamp, Joe’s Hill to Windy Hill via Cane Garden Bay Road, [and] a portion of Purcell Estate between One Mart and Caribbean Transport.”

“If you do not reside in the areas mentioned above and you are still without power, please message us your name, location, and phone number so that crews can be dispatched to your area,” added the BVIEC.

In the meantime, organizers of a public ‘enVIsion 2040’ meeting that was scheduled to be held on Jost Van Dyke this evening have announced that the event has been postponed due to the inclement weather. A new date was not disclosed.

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