Buildings shuttered in hurricane exercise

Buildings were shuttered across George Town Wednesday as part of preparations for this year’s upcoming hurricane season.

Staff from the Public Works Department and the National Roads Authority worked in teams to shutter and protect more than 100 government complexes and buildings, including 16 hurricane shelters.

National Roads Authority acting managing director Paul Parchment said the Hurricane Preparedness Exercise duplicated activities that would take place in the event of a real hurricane to ensure people were prepared if a hurricane reaches the island.

Mr. Parchment said as well as shuttering buildings, standby generators in shelters and other buildings were checked and started, and cistern-water levels checked.

On completion of the securing of shelters and buildings, the teams carried out inspections to certify that all facilities were adequately secured.

National Roads Authority and Public Works Department officials are urging residents to follow their lead and review their own home-protection and hurricane preparedness plans before the start of hurricane season on June 1.

They said residents need to ensure they have materials that can be used to cover windows and glass doors in the event of a hurricane; should be aware if their home will be safe in a storm; and should have an evacuation plan with prepared alternate accommodation.

The Atlantic hurricane season lasts until Nov. 30.
Forecasters from Colorado State University have predicted that 2014 will be a quiet Atlantic hurricane season, suggesting that nine tropical storms will form, but only three will become hurricanes.

Tropical storms have sustained winds of 39 mph, while hurricane winds 74 mph and above.

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