All clear

The Cayman Islands has been given the all clear from Tropical Storm Ernesto.

National Hurricane Committee Chairman Donnie Ebanks is happy that Ernesto has spared the Cayman Islands, but he cautions all residents to remain vigilant.

‘We are entering the peak of the hurricane season and Ernesto is doubtless the forerunner of even more severe weather conditions,’ he said. ‘I therefore urge everyone to retain as many of their preparations in a state of readiness as possible. We cannot afford to let down our guard.

‘The important reminder that this system provided us is that we cannot rely totally on what our forecasters, with their best efforts, predict a system will do. The substantial changes in the track of the system from Saturday afternoon through Sunday have meant our good fortune but for the residents of South-eastern Cuba, it has been the opposite. They have not had the benefit of two or three days to prepare. We cannot assume either, that we always will. Once a system is in our neighbourhood, we must be alert to the possibility that forecasts can change for the worse as well as for the better.’

Mr. Ebanks added, ‘I’m really grateful for the excellent work of the media and our Joint Communications sub-Committee over the weekend, making sure that our public was kept informed of what was happening and expected.’

He said he was also extremely pleased with the level of response and preparedness on the part of the Sister Islands Emergency Committee and the NHC’s various sub-committees.

‘The District Commissioner and his folks on the Sister Islands were on the ball and well prepared or the possibility of the system coming to them as it seemed determined to do. And as always, the level of commitment of our NHC members and sub-committees here on Grand Cayman was exceptional’, he concluded.