THURSDAY, 20TH AUGUST, 2020 as at 10:00 a.m.
The National Meteorological Services of Belize and the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) hereby advises the general public that the tropical wave which is approaching has become better organized and is now accompanying broad area of low pressure over the central Caribbean Sea.
The odds of development (as indicated by the national hurricane center) has increased to 90 percent indicating that this system is very likely to become a tropical depression later today or tonight. Movement continue to the west but most of the models show a turn to the WNW once the system reaches NE Honduras. This would suggest landfall on the Yucatan peninsula around Saturday evening. Regardless of development or whether a potential landfall occurs on the country, we need to be prepared for heavy rainfall and possible flooding. We need to continue to be on the alert and watch this system closely. The Met Service provide another update later after the new model runs and the report from the aircraft.
In accordance with your emergency plan the public is advised to remain vigilant and to be prepared for possible storm landfall over the weekend. IF the need arises for you to evacuate, move early, know which shelter you will go to, take along your essential necessities required for you to survive. COVID 19 Shelter Protocols and SI -119 of 2020 shall be adhered to. You must wear a mask, people showing symptoms will be contained in a separate section of the shelter building, hand washing /sanitizing must be done before entering a shelter. Shelter Wardens and Managers will allocate shelter space. Social distance must be adhered to and shelters must be sanitized on a regular basis garbage properly disposed of. Note. The elderly and persons with underlying health conditions must not occupy the same space with normal persons. Shelter Managers must monitor and correct hygiene and cough /sneeze etiquette. The Ministry of Health (MoH) staff will conduct daily monitoring of shelters to detect people who are sick and showing signs of COVID19. The Shelter Management Team (Public Officers/ Volunteers) MUST use PPE. The NEMO Emergency Hotline is 936. NEMO’s Emergency Coordinators can be reached as follows:
Corozal, Mr. Ronnie Hernandez at 614 7140;
Orange Walk, Mr. Aragon at 615 2264; or Mr. Leiva at 614 7177
Belize District, Mr. Alphius Gillett at 614 4735;
San Pedro, Ms. Vanessa Parham at 614 5865;
Belize City, Mr. Al Westby at 614 8604 or Mr. Pollard at 6143244;
Belmopan, Ms. Clare Moody at 614 5705; or Mr. Eiley at 624 2365
Cayo, Mr. Al Westby at 6148604 or Mr. Johnny Ramclam at 614 5891;
Stann Creek –Coastal- Dangrigaincluding Mullins River to Independence),
Mr. Kevin Flores at 604 3632
Stann Creek –Interior- Hummingbird and Southern highway communities, Mr. David Cruz at 614 8514; and for
Toledo, Mr. Kenton Parham at 614 2158 or Mr. Dennis Williams at 614 2393
NEMO HQ alerted its committees since Sunday 16th August and has been posting alert notices on our website. All district and city emergency committees met on Tuesday. Also we have been receiving and redistributing relief supplies and PPE sent by CDEMA. PPEs from the Ministry of Health will be collected and distributed today to compliment what we already have in our five warehouses across the country. NEMO remains in close communication with the national met service. We don’t anticipate the need to evacuate San Pedro and the cayes if it becomes necessary the National Evacuation Committee, like all other national committees, are ready to put their plan into action. Note, we have conducted three very well coordinated evacuation of people from San Pedro during their first lockdown. NEMO will keep the general public updated on any further developments. The public is advised to stay alert. Please adhere to the official release from the National Met Service and NEMO. We implore the public not to panic due to the existing suffering and hardship already brought on by COVID 19 are stressful enough.