NASSAU, The Bahamas – The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) National Emergency Operations Centre is stressing to residents of Rum Cay, San Salvador and Cat Island the importance of vigilance in hurricane preparedness, as the brunt force of Hurricane Irene will be affecting their islands.
Rum Cay is currently experiencing tropical storm force winds of 39-73 miles an hour and this will last until 11:30 a.m. Thursday. Hurricane force winds of 74-125 miles per hour started around 4:30 p.m. and will continue until 2 a.m. Thursday. However, the eye of the hurricane will pass directly over Rum Cay 8:30 p.m. to 11 p.m.
On the island of San Salvador tropical force winds have already started and will continue until noon tomorrow. Hurricane force winds of 74-90 miles per hour are expected to begin around 7 p.m. tonight and will continue until 1 a.m. tomorrow.
South Cat Island has already started experiencing tropical storm force winds and that is expected to last until 3 p.m. Thursday. Hurricane force winds of 74-130 miles per hour are expected by 9 p.m. tonight and will last until 5:30 p.m. tomorrow. The eye of Hurricane Irene will past directly over the area from 11:30 p.m. to 6:30 a.m.
North Cat Island is currently experiencing tropical force winds that will last until 5 p.m. Thursday. Hurricane force winds of 74-130 miles per hour will begin 11:30 p.m. tonight and will continue until 9 a.m. Thursday.
Hurricane Irene is a big and powerful storm that will affect The Bahamas with up to and possibly exceeding category three on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale.
All residents must respect the storm and find proper shelter. Those already under the effect of the storm are advised not to go out into the streets and wait out the storm in a safe, secure place. If you do not feel safe where you are or feel that your location could be compromised, please go to your nearest shelter.
This is a national emergency and all residents of The Bahamas must fathom the gravity of this situation. Please stay tuned to national broadcasts for the best possible information for your island.
NEMA will continue to monitor the storm and keep the public inform of its development and movement.
In a statement issued to the press just minutes ago the MP for Cat Island, Rum Cay and San Salvador, Philip Brave Davis noted:
In prayer Anne and I remember the people of Cat Island, Rum Cay and San Salvador who now wait under the threat of Hurricane Irene, a major category 3 storm.
From preliminary reports in the South Bahamas, Irene is a dangerous Hurricane as it moves its way up through our beautiful islands.
I take this time to advise all residents in the Bahamas, particularly those in my constituency, to remain indoors and heed the advisories now being circulated by NEMA along with all relevant agencies.
Irene is a dangerous Hurricane; packing winds up to 120 mph.
As soon as all alerts are lifted and all danger cleared, I shall visit affected areas in my constituency to assess damages.
Let us therefore remain prayerful, knowing together we will emerge stronger as a people and country.