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Message: Hurricane Matthew remains a powerful Category 4 hurricane moving in a westerly direction over the Caribbean Sea. Hurricane watches have been issued for Jamaica and the southern border of Haiti with the Dominican Republic to Le Mole St Nicholas. A hurricane watch has been issued for Haiti from east of Le Mole St Nicholas to the Northern border with the Dominican Republic. Interests in The Bahamas, and the Turks and Caicos Islands should continue to monitor the progress of Hurricane Matthew.

EVENT:
Hurricane Matthew, the 5th named hurricane of the 2016 Atlantic Hurricane season, was formed near the Windward Islands on September 28, 2016. As a Tropical Storm, Matthew impacted Barbados, Dominica, Saint Lucia, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines on Wednesday September 28, 2016.

On Saturday, October 1, 2016 at 5: 00 PM AST (2100 UTC), Hurricane Matthew was located near latitude 13.5 North, longitude 73.4 West, and approximately 360 miles (580km) SSW of Port-au-Prince Haiti and approximately 385 miles (620km) SE of Kingston, Jamaica. Matthew is moving toward the west near 3 mph (6 km/h) and is expected to remain a powerful hurricane through to Monday although some fluctuation in intensity is expected over the weekend.

PROGNOSIS:
Reports from the National Hurricane Center (NHC) Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft indicated that maximum sustained winds have increased to near 150 mph (240 km/h) with higher gusts. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 25 miles (35 km) from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 205 miles (335 km). A turn toward the north-northwest is forecast for Sunday followed by a turn towards the north on Monday. The center of Matthew will approach Jamaica and south-western Haiti on Monday.

NATIONAL ACTIONS:
North Western-Caribbean Participating States
The CDEMA CU is in contact with the National Disaster Offices (NDOs) of Bahamas, Jamaica, Haiti and Turks and Caicos Islands regarding their preparations for the probable impact from Hurricane Matthew. The Governments of these countries have been briefed and have commenced pre-strike meetings and will continue to monitor the system.

The National Emergency Operational Center (NEOC) in Haiti was fully activated today Saturday, October 1st by the Civil Protection Directorate. The Emergency Operational Center in the 10 geographical regions of the country are partially activated and Mayors who are the head of Civil Protection at the Municipal level have been informed of the situation regarding hurricane Matthew. The National Meteorological Center is monitoring the situation and has been providing constant updates to the Civil Protection Department and the Press.

Radio communication tests have been undertaken between the NEOC and the EOC in the geographical regions and Shelter Team/Evacuation Coordination Unit is on standby. Two islands in the south region (ilet a brouee and Caille a l'eau) have been evacuated. The NEOC has scheduled a press conference today and at this occasion a Red Alert will be officially launched.

 

Eastern-Caribbean Participating States
Barbados, Dominica and St. Vincent & the Grenadines have deactivated their NEOCs but are still conducting damage assessments.

Saint Lucia
The National Emergency Operations Centre stood down on Friday, September 30th, 2016. Preliminary reports indicate that one house in Vieux-Fort South was completely damaged; 54 households in Dennery experienced flooding and wind damage; 3 houses in Garrand experienced partial roof damage and one house in Cabiche was extensively damaged. The Saint Lucia Red Cross distributed non-food items to seventy-seven (77) households (247 persons) in Dennery and to five (5) households (23 persons) in Millet. Damage assessments and road clearances continue across sectors and communities as well as the restoration of water, electricity and communication services by the relevant utility providers.

REGIONAL ACTIONS:
CDEMA continues to monitor the system and provide updates as is necessary. The Regional Coordination Plan remains activated and the Regional Response Mechanism (RRM) continues to be on standby. The CARICOM Disaster Relief Unit (CDRU), the CARICOM Disaster Assessment and Coordination (CDAC) team and CARICOM Operational Support Team (COST) have stood down for the Eastern Caribbean, but remain on alert for the impending threat of Hurricane Matthew on the North Western Caribbean.

The CDEMA CU has initiated the following actions:

  • Maintained regular contact with threatened Participating States (Bahamas, Haiti, Jamaica and Turks & Caicos Islands)
  • Updated and shared an Operational Scenario and Plan for ‘Hurricane Matthew’ for States threatened in the North Western Caribbean. Preliminary impact assessments based on current population data and project/actual impact were presented for the North Western PSs.
  • Conducted a briefing on Saturday, October 1, 2016 with the RRM partners in the North-Western region. Another briefing to be conducted on Sunday, October 2nd, 2016
  • Regional response teams are on alert - CARICOM Disaster Relief Unit (CDRU), CARICOM Disaster Response and Assessment Coordination Team (CDAC) and the CARICOM Operational Support Team (COST) and the Rapid Needs Assessment team (RNAT)

Partners in the North-Western Caribbean have initiated the following actions:

  • International Federation of the Red Cross (IFRC) has activated its Contingency Plan, pre-positioned staff and placed its regional and global response teams on alert.
  • Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has deployed its United Nations Disaster Assessment and Coordination (UNDAC) members to Jamaica and Haiti.
  • Regional Security System (RSS) has made contact with Military and Police Chiefs. The CARICOM Battalion and the RSS Airwing remain on alert.
  • The Pan-American Health Organisation (PAHO) has 3 persons on the ground in Jamaica; 3 persons to be deployed to the Bahamas tomorrow (Sunday, October 2nd) and three additional persons on standby to support public health and medical needs.
  • World Food Programme (WFP) has activated measures for preparedness.
  • United States Agency for International Development (USAID) / Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) has strengthened its representation in Bahamas, and Jamaica and has a team in Haiti. OFDA has also confirmed its arrangements for providing support to the RRM through aerial reconnaissance.
  • European Commission Humanitarian Aid (ECHO) is actively monitoring the system and is prepared and ready for deployment.

CDEMA continues to monitor the system and provide updates as necessary.

CONTACT DETAILS: The CDEMA CU 24-hour contact number 1(246) 434-4880

 

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