NEMO and DANA host workshop in San Pedro Town, ahead of 2019 Atlantic Hurricane Season
Saturday, June 1st, 2019
To increase preparedness during the 2019 Atlantic Hurricane Season, Damage Assessment Need Analysis (DANA) along with the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) held a workshop at the NEMO office in San Pedro Town on Wednesday, May 29th. The workshop was facilitated by DANA National Liaison Officer Tennielle Williams-Hendy and saw the participation of 21 island residents from both the private and governmental sectors.
From 9AM to 1PM, the workshop aimed at preparing participants, in the event of a disaster, to make an accurate assessment of the damage caused and the needs of those affected, both immediate and long term, so that the relief and assistance provided is adequately and rationally distributed. This is one of a series of workshops and other standard NEMO activities being conducted countrywide in preparation for the start of the new Hurricane Season on June 1st. “We are the ones who will assess Belizean households after a disaster, so we can determine its condition, then pass on that information to NEMO. We are not responsible for promising anything, that’s not our part,” said Williams-Hendy.
Participants were further trained on how to properly fill out an assessment sheets in the event the island is hit by a hurricane. “If San Pedro Town gets hit by a hurricane this year, the people who were part of this workshop will be the ones working along with DANA in the assessment process,” she said.
The 2019 Atlantic Storms expected are Andrea, Barry, Chantal, Dorian, Erin, Fernand, Gabrielle, Humberto, Imelda, Jerry, Karen, Lorenzo, Melissa, Nestor, Olga, Pablo, Rebekah, Sebastien, Tanya, Van, and Wendy. Five are expected to become hurricanes, two major.
NEMO reminds island residents that hurricanes can be dangerous, so it is important to listen to the hurricane warning messages and to be well prepared to reduce chances of injury or major property damage. Before a hurricane, you should know your emergency shelters, have disaster supplies on hand, protect your windows, trim trees, clear drains, review home and auto insurance, make arrangements for pets and livestock, and develop an emergency communications plan. While some disaster supplies recommended are flashlights with extra batteries, portable battery-operated radio, first aid Kit, nonperishable (canned food), water, essential medicines, cash, and sturdy shoes.
The establishments that will serve as shelters for San Pedro Town in the event of a hurricane are San Pedro High School, and New Horizon Seventh Day Adventist School and Church. The NEMO office in San Pedro Town is located on the second floor of the Wings Plaza on Coconut Drive. Belize Rural South NEMO Coordinator Vanessa Parham can be contacted directly at phone number 632-3698; the NEMO Emergency Hotline phone number is 936.
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