BVI News

Considerations being made to acquire new shelters as 2020 season looms

With the 2020 Atlantic Hurricane Season set to commence in the next seven days, Governor Augustus Jaspert has said the government is considering to acquire new emergency shelter facilities.

Governor Jaspert gave that indication while responding to questions during a press briefing on Thursday, May 21.

He was asked if government may designate new shelters this season since the territory has not been operating with its full complement of emergency shelters since the 2017 hurricanes.

“Yes, that is part of the consideration,” the Governor replied. “It’s being worked through now to look at our shelter capacity across all of the islands as well to map out the capacity that would be different under a COVID-19 scenario, to make adaptations where we can, including things like hygiene and washing facilities.”

Readiness Assessment being completed

Governor Jaspert said the Ministry of Health, and the Department of Disaster Management (DDM) have been working together to assess the needs of hurricane shelters.

He said the annual readiness assessment conducted before the start of each hurricane season is in the process of being completed by the DDM.

“Essentially, we check off each of our key parts of response, so each of the major frontline response agencies — are they ready? We look at our communication systems, we have all of our sirens rebuilt across the territory already, our contingency supplies and stocks put out,” the governor explained.

UK assistance

Meanwhile, Governor Jaspert also said the United Kingdom has been working with the territory to ensure that emergency response plans are in place should the BVI’s need for any assistance arises.

“We are also linking up with the United Kingdom who have put extra resources into the region this year, I’ve mentioned those RFA Argus which is the naval ship, there is also another ship called HMS Medway, it includes helicopters as well,” he said.

The governor, in the meantime, has warned residents that while the government will do what it has to, the primary responsibility rests with every member of the public to get themselves and thier businesses ready.

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  1. Lawd says:

    This coming from a governor who has a masters degree in International Security and Strategy. Where is the security? What is the strategy? One week before the hurricane season starts, and mind you, he confirmed it will be a very active season, yet all possible shelters are not yet ready? And his biggest concern is early release of information pertaining to the appointment of a local AG, in which he was so disappointed. Well lawd, this here ain’t looking right. But which one more disappointing buddy. Saying a little prayer for aahll ah dem.

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    • Gov says:

      Governor buy the BVI people caves. That’s what they are missing. Their natural habitat. They bitch about you and the UK. Leave them fend for themselves

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      • @Gov says:

        Wrong. People just hold the governor to the same standards as they would hold anyone else based on their qualifications, experience and actual performance. We all care for our territory so perhaps get used to that.

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        • Daffy Duck says:

          BVISLANDERS don’t deserve s$@t, the Governor should leave them rot, these people are the nastiest one can find in these entire Caribbean islands, yet they want investors to come and invest on their rock, expats to come pay off their mortgages for them, they gripe and bitch about everything,it’s all about me me, gemme gemme, a bunch of morbidly obese swines, selfish lowlife scoundrels.

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  2. Furthermore... says:

    Having ships and helicopter on standby is not a plan. Have you identified key persons on the ground that they should communicate with, given that certain responsibilities and certain levels of authority may have to be delegated to ensure that there is a cohesive rescue and security effort across the island (especially in possibly cut off areas) if there is any repeat of Irma. Have any persons on the ground been able to meet or communicate with the chief commanders in these vessels and helicopters. Has the plan for resuce efforts been agreed to in detail between all relevant stakeholders involved?

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    • Huh ? says:

      Have you not heard of DDM and other things set up since Irma ?

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      • @Huh ? says:

        How much communication is really going on between the military and people on the ground, for example DDM (DDM was in existence before Irma even happened but still there was confusion). How effective was DDM during the last storms by themselves. They still needed volunteers and leaders in the community to communicate and reach out to people. Where is the evidence of cohesive efforts between the military and local persons or entities. What is the clear plan?

  3. Optimist says:

    I’m glad we didn’t get the funding sorted so the RDA could have the shelters re-built, not to mention all the other woeful infrastructure. I thought that was why the House of Assembly voted to accept the loan guarantee finance, 2 years ago, or there abouts. Oh well; never mind, fingers crossed!!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Your mind set; your mental, political and national views maybe/are contrary to theirs one would bet, @Furthermore.

    You may be thinking about the safety, well- being and preservation of your country and people. Rest assured those do not match yours.

  5. A man says:

    I would expect this guv to be focussing on ensuring we have sufficient prisons

    • Quiet Rebel says:

      Lock dem up, not educate dem, was the UK MO. Go to nearly every Anglophone country and you will sure to find a primitive Her Majesty’s Prison but rarely if ever will you find a Her Majesty’s High School. Here at home in the VI, there is a Her Majesty’s Prison at Balo but no Her Majesty’s High School. Lock up the brutes, not educate them. It is more cost effective to educate than to incarcerate.

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  6. E. Leonard says:

    As a gentle reminder, the VI lies in hurricane alley with at least a 1% chance of being hit by a major hurricane(s) every hurricane season. The VI was hit by 2 monster Cat 5 hurricanes in September 2017(Irmaria), causing approx $3.2B in damages with the territory being in various stages of recovery. The official start of the hurricane season is a mere 7 days away and by now the territory should have been prepared and ready.

    It is a false sense of security to let residents rideout in a shelter that is not structurally sound enough to withstand the wind force and storm surge of the approaching storm. A building with four walls and a roof may not be a safe enough structure; it needs to be assessed and certified by a civil/structural engineer as structurally sound.

    Being prepared and ready means siting structurally sound facilities on high ground to protect against wind force and storm surge. Government needs to invest in some strategically placed structurally sound, monolithic, multi-use domes. Dome shape buildings are more aerodynamic with less wind drag than other types of structures. The domes can be used as rideout shelters during hurricanes and other disasters and for other uses during normal times, ie, gyms, schools, offices…..etc.

    Now is the time to make those last, last minute preparations,ie, locating and securing important documents, inventorying and stocking safe room(s), checking and updating property insurance, double checking evac plans, stocking up on non-perishable food items and water, inspecting shutters for windows and doors(keeping the wind out reduces the possibility of roof lifting off), getting rid of excessive debris that can become flying missiles (before storm is projected to make landfall secure any loose debris), procure ample supply of needed prescription drugs and cash at least 36-48 hours before storm is projected to make landfall, test transistor radio, procure portable cell phone charger(s), procure satellite phones(?).”……..etc.

    The season is projected to be above normal with at least 19 named storms with 6-10 being hurricanes and 3+ being major hurricanes (Cat 3 and above). Avoid complacency, plan ahead and be prepared and ready.

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    • E. Leonard says:

      “As a gentle reminder, the VI lies in hurricane alley with at least a 1% chance of being hit by a major hurricane(s) every hurricane season.” Correction: The foregoing statement should have read: As a gentle reminder, the VI lies in hurricane alley and a 100-year storm (major hurricane Cat 3 or higher) has a 1% chance of hitting it every hurricane season.

      NB: A 100-year storm does not mean that the return period for a storm is every 100 years. It means that there is a 1% chance of a storm occurring every year. A 50-year storm means there is a 2% chance of a storm occurring every year. A 500-year storm 0.2%.

      • Misnomer says:

        So why they call floods 100-year floor or storms 100-year storm if they can occur more frequently than a 200 years? This is confusing. Does insurance set rates based on high frequency or low frequency?

  7. Local girl says:

    I hope another strong one come through these Territory shore and just take out a few of the nasty ungrateful locals, wait I’m sorry ALL the nasty trifling no good locals who feel entitled and greedy b******s.
    Irma and Maria didn’t taught us a thing not even Covid seem to be able to give us a wake up call, so I hope a Cat 5 visit us this season, BVISLANDERS are too wicked, one can search the entire Caribbean Archipelago and will not find another det of deplorables like Tolians. Sorry to say.

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    • @Local Girl says:

      @Local Girl, you are imposter posing as a local girl, for a true national of any country does not wish destruction on his or her country regardless of the conditions, attitude or behaviour of the people. Instead, he/she would work and pray to make it better. If you are indeed a local, you are troubled; and if you are not local, please catch the first thing sailing or flying.

  8. @Local girl says:

    Couldn’t have said it better than you. You are a 1000% correct. These people learn nothing and are just ungrateful b****+ds

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