by Linda Straker
- Almost 8 inches of rain from late Friday night into Saturday expected
- Citizens to be extremely cautious about flooding
- Wind speed will be 45 miles per hour with high gust
- Decision to activate shelters not yet taken
Grenadians are being warned to be prepared for the worst-case scenario with the passage of Tropical Storm Gonzalo which is expected to shower the island with almost 8 inches of rain from late Friday night into Saturday.
“The professionals are saying there are lots of uncertainty in that forecast so we expect things to change…it’s a dynamic system, like all other weather systems we expect changes as time progresses so what we are saying here is not set in stone. So please let us be prepared for the worst-case scenario. The rainfall is the main factor, up to 8 inches, that is a lot of rainfall,” said Hubert Whyte, Manager of the Metrological Office at the Maurice Bishop International Airport.
“It is very uncertain but what we are assured of, is that there is a system approaching Grenada and we should work for the best result but prepare for the worst,” added Sylvan McIntyre during a news conference late Friday afternoon.
Besides the rainfall that is expected to affect the entire state of Grenada including the Grenadines islands which fall under its administration, Whyte said that the wind speed will be 45 miles per hour with high gust.
“We are calling on interests in the Windwards Islands to exercise caution. What we expect most from this tropical storm is a lot of rainfall. It is expected to produce rainfall of between 2 and 5 inches in some areas. However, interests in the southern Caribbean like Grenada and Tobago may get up to 8 inches,” he said, reminding citizens that the island is under a tropical storm warning.
Winston Garraway, Minister with responsibility for the National Disaster Management Agency (NaDMA) said that because the strength of the wind is not within hurricane conditions the island will not shut down before the arrival of the storm.
“Businesses will operate as normal,” said Garraway who explained that the wind factor is not a hurricane. He further called on citizens to be extremely cautious about the flooding because of the high volume of rain expected.
A decision to activate shelters has not yet been taken. McIntyre said that they will be activated if the need arises.
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