Cayman Islands gears up for National Day of Preparedness

Monday’s public holiday marks not just Discovery Day but Cayman’s National Day of Preparedness.

This year’s theme is “Don’t let your guard down!”

National Day of Preparedness is observed each year in the Cayman Islands to encourage residents to prepare for the hurricane season and any other natural disaster.

Deputy Governor Franz Manderson, in a message issued this week, pointed out that National Preparedness Day is observed on a public holiday, Discovery Day, “so that all residents can have the opportunity to review their respective family plans and level of personal preparedness for the hurricane season.”

In a bid to combat complacency, Mr. Manderson said, the government is encouraging residents to plan ahead and prepare, for example, by replenishing hurricane supplies, checking window and door shutters and trimming overhanging trees.

“As we use the day to enhance our individual and community preparedness,” Mr. Manderson said in the statement, “remember the vulnerable persons in our community and in your own family, and ensure that they are planned for adequately.”

Residents are advised, at an absolute minimum, to have a supply of non-perishable food, such as canned goods, to last at least three days – but preferably one week – and enough drinking water, a gallon of water per person per day ideally, to last a week.

“Take time also to plan for the elderly and very young members of your family,” Mr. Manderson said. “They will need your assistance in coping with the effects of the hurricane.”

He urged people to meet with family members and come up with a “family disaster plan,” service generators, check insurance policies to ensure they are current, remove debris from yards, and get a battery operated radio and flashlight.

Making a decision early on where to stay during a hurricane is also advisable, Mr. Manderson said, and consider what to do with pets, as shelters will not take animals. Also make plans for where to park cars during a storm.

“So many people lost so many things in Hurricane Ivan and Paloma, and the truth is – that in many cases if they had been better prepared then they may not have lost their car, or their photographs, or other priceless personal items,” Mr. Manderson added.

He also reminded civil servants that they “have a duty to maintain a high level of personal and family preparedness at all times.

“The country depends on our emergency services and first responders to be ready in a time of crisis. All civil servants are expected to contribute to the recovery, and may be requested to perform additional duties above and beyond their regular work schedule,” he added.

Mr. Manderson also reminded residents who intend to leave the islands prior to, or after, a hurricane, to ensure that their travel documents are updated and that visas or visa waivers are obtained.

“Regardless of the forecast for the season, it only takes one storm to cause damage and disrupt our lives,” he said. “So please don’t let your guard down, and let us be prepared for the hurricane season and beyond.”


  1. L. BELL “Is there a shelter somewhere”?
    Thank you for such a good question. Now please take a drive to Bodden Town. When you reach the RANKING JERK CENTER, Do an eyes left, and behold you will see a half finished, best and biggest Hurricane shelter. One that can hold at least four to five thousand people. Don’t be satisfied with just a look drive up and take a walk inside inspecting the many strong hold areas. Then sit on the steps inside and ask yourself why the government does not enclose this building.
    The progressive Government (especially the Bodden Town four) of course selfishly because of political grudges vowed not to give a cent to finish this building when they got in.
    My comments are that the people of Bodden town just got what they deserve. Now they are crying they want them out, and may I ask, put in who?
    If Mr. Manderson wanted to do something, he would be unselfish and call his Cabinet together and complete the Hurricane Shelter in Bodden Town. All persons who were around in 2004 would remember what Bodden Town looked like. The primary school closed for almost four months, could not get the residents out. Children could not go to school, while residents lived in their yards sleeping on army cots under coconut trees, among debri. No drinking water no food, for days, wearing the same clothes for weeks.
    Making a decision where to stay during a Hurricane? Nonsence!! Where can the people of Bodden Town stay in this seaside district, when the Ocean is right there in front of every one door.
    Imagine having six feet of ocean water surrounding your home on Cumber avenue and the Government telling us to be prepared. Prepared to go where? Do not let our guard down? It does not matter whether Guards are let down or not. It wont change a thing.
    The Governments have been promising with an (s) have promised every year to do something about CUMBER AVENUE, They lied, they all lied and even to the last time when we were flooded out we had CHRIS SAUNDERS another gentleman came to the district with a BIG PROMISE to assist outside government. because the PROGRESSIVE GOVERNMENT selfishly would not fix the problem.
    We are still waiting. But you all want us to vote for you 2017. No we will not.
    The hurricane shelter in Bodden Town land was donated by private persons. The church has been struggling to get the money needed to put in windows and doors. The PROGRESSIVE GOVERNMENT secretly voted and passed under the eyes of Mr Manderson, thousands and thousands of dollars Half a million to put a state of art roof, central aircondition, four bathrooms, new HGT windows, new doors, complete interior refurbishing on an old house that is not being used, and only a play ground for a hand full of Political seniors. Ask for the records of the money that was spent on that building. Go there and look where it is. In the middle of a jungle.
    Then look at the million dollar By-Pass in the back of it. Caymanians you are unbelieveable; if you do not question this. Hurricane preparedness? Just a bunch of nonsense talk.

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