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Caricom ready, willing to help hurricane-hit islands
Caricom is on standby to aid Jamaica, Haiti and the Bahamas after Wednesday’s Category 1 Hurricane Sandy barrelled past Jamaica, Haiti and the Bahamas, says Assistant Secretary General Colin Granderson. In a telephone interview with the T&T Guardian yesterday, Granderson said the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency in Barbados had been in touch with agencies in the three countries and was assessing the damage caused by the hurricane.
“We know there have been flooding and landslides in Haiti but the assessments are still being made,” said Granderson. “We are standing by to see what is needed. Once the damage assessment is complete, we can move forward.” Corporate communications manager at Caribbean Airlines Clint Williams said as of yesterday morning, both airports in Jamaica had reopened and flights were back to normal.
The hurricane has claimed at least three lives so far, one in Jamaica and two in Haiti. In Jamaica, the Gleaner newspaper reported a 74-year-old man being killed by a boulder which rolled onto a house. In Haiti, a woman drowned trying to cross a swollen river in Camp-Perrin and another died in the small town of Coteaux, according to reports.
The Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management in Jamaica issued a situation report yesterday at 5 am giving the all-clear for people could return to evacuated communities. According to the report, no further casualties were reported. T&T’s High Commissioner to Jamaica Iva Gloudon said the situation hadn’t changed much since Wednesday.
“We are still without power. I know Kingston and the outlying areas are definitely without power,” said Gloudon.
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