Residents stock up ahead of storm

For the latest information on storm activity in the Cayman Islands, as well as information on how to prepare for hurricane season, visit Storm Centre.

Cayman resident Kenik Brissett was among several shoppers at McRuss Supermarket Sunday night buying supplies following the announcement that Cayman was under a tropical storm warning.

“I had to stock up because you know the storm coming, so getting all the little non-perishables… the tin stuff… some water. Hopefully [it] goes away,” she said, clutching her shopping basket at the Eastern Avenue supermarket.,

Government issued the the tropical storm warning Sunday evening after potential tropical cyclone 26, soon to be tropical storm Delta, was headed Cayman’s way.

According to Government Information Services, the weather on Grand Cayman is expected to begin deteriorating from around 1pm on Monday, with the onset of tropical storm conditions at 10pm.

All public schools will be closed Monday and Tuesday. Late Sunday evening, the Health Services Authority announced changes to its clinic hours. For updates on the HSA changes as well as other storm-related information and closures, check out the Compass live blog.

Shopper O’Neil Gray said this was his first time riding out a storm in Cayman so he did not know what to expect, and was stocking up.

“I’m ready, but I do not want it to get into a hurricane, though,” he said.

Gray was buying sardines, rice and other essentials as he prepared for the arrival of the weather system.

He said he was not surprised by the tropical storm warning as “we’re under the hurricane season and it’s not over yet. But we are preparing.”

This supermarket employee was busy stacking canned food as customers came in to stock up. – Photo: Reshma Ragoonath

For Brissett, seeing the choppy seas Saturday left her nervous.

“I’m slightly worried. I’ve noticed the water yesterday was a bit high… hopefully, I don’t have to go to work tomorrow because I work right there on the [water]front,” she said.

Charles Russell, McRuss Eastern Avenue manager, said he noticed an uptick in customers Sunday afternoon.

“It’s just got busy right away; it changed definitely from what is normal. It just increased as the announcement was made,” he said, adding, “We keep very little on the front actually at any given time. So we had to constantly just keep restocking… we’ve gone through a few pallets of water already.”

He said the Eastern Avenue supermarket runs 24 hours and he was expecting to open Monday as normal, unless the weather severely deteriorated.

“People need to come in and get the supplies. I mean, we learned during COVID that we have to support the community and just be there to provide them the things that they need,” he said. “So we’re almost geared up for that right now. We’re just prepared from COVID to now. We’re still kind of in the same mode of high volumes.”

Supermarket employees were busy replenishing supplies as fast as they were removed from the shelves.

Civil servants have been advised to work remotely on Monday. A decision is expected to be taken on the closure of government offices around mid-day tomorrow.

All private-sector businesses whose staff are able to work remotely are encouraged to do the same, GIS said.

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