Cayman under Tropical Storm Watch

| 05/11/2020 | 42 Comments

(CNS) UPDATED: Schools and several other government entities announced that they would be closed Friday as civil servants will be working from home. The Cayman Islands is now under a tropical storm watch. At 4pm Thursday expectations were that a re-intensified Eta would emerge over the Caribbean Sea tonight and approach the Cayman Islands by Saturday. Eta is expected to move within around 100 miles of Grand Cayman and 155 miles NW of Cayman Brac.

Maximum sustained winds are currently near 35 mph with higher gusts. Strengthening is forecast, and Eta is expected to re-gain tropical storm strength on Friday.

The education ministry said that all government schools will be closed tomorrow ahead of the long weekend. Officials said that parents of students in private schools and preschools can expect to be contacted by those institutions about their plans.

But the ministry said it was guided by the advice of the weather service, which has also placed Cayman under a flood warning, with a projected 5 to 10 inches of rain from Eta. The ministry said that out of an abundance of caution, the decision was made to close schools and that Department of Education Services personnel will work from home on Friday to allow necessary building repairs to take place.

Schools have been advised to take all necessary precautions to secure their facilities to mitigate any damage that may occur due to the heavy rains.

Other government offices may also be closed. The Customs Border Control (CBC) collections office and the CBC warehouse, located on Owen Roberts Drive, will be closed on Saturday, 7 November. Importers who have cargo at the Port Authority Warehouse and CBC’s transit shed should complete the import process and collect their cargo as soon as possible.  

Hazard Management Cayman Islands is advising residents to exercise increased caution on flooded roads. All vessels should be in Safe Harbour on Saturday.

“Excessive rain has led to numerous potholes opening up, and the flood waters make these more difficult to detect. Periods of torrential rainfall will result in limited visibility on the roads,” officials said. “Residents are encouraged to limit travel on the roads to essential journeys from late Friday and into Saturday.”

Wave heights are forecast to reach 5 to 7 feet on Friday, and 7 to 9 feet on Saturday. Large waves are forecast to begin affecting the west side of Grand Cayman beginning this weekend. Strong and gusty winds, possibly reaching tropical-storm-force at times, are forecast for late Friday and through Saturday. The saturated state of the ground could lead to a higher likelihood of some trees toppling.

While emergency shelters are closed, the Red Cross Shelter is on standby. Other shelters are being prepared should the need arise as a result of localised flooding. Residents should continue to monitor official sources of information such as the National Weather Service website about this system.


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Category: Science & Nature, Weather

Comments (42)

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  1. Say it like it is says:

    Less than one inch of rain as of 9.00pm and light winds throughout the day but our civil servants and teachers really do need a long weekend after sitting at home for so long during Covid. But our kids really do need to be in school after Covid. Bad decision.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Since we are all talking about education and judgement calls, please throughly research the damage from the following:
    Hurricane Mitch of 1998,
    Hurricane Ivan of 2004,
    Hurricane Wilma of 2005,
    Hurricane Paloma of 2008 and
    Hurricane Delta of 2020.

    I hope all who have yet to become enlightened will learn what everyone is talking about, connect the dots, and contemplate the seriousness of this situation, as Eta of 2020 has unfortunately already been added to this stomach-churning and catastrophic-inducing list and it is far from over. I have personally experienced all of these storms, they were much more than just rainy days or days off. The difference between 50 and 150 mph cannot be underestimated and can swap on a dime!!!!!

    No one likes playing these games of whirlwind blackjack, you either come out broke or just make it through with what you had.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hurricane_Mitch
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hurricane_Ivan
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hurricane_Wilma
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hurricane_Paloma
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hurricane_Delta

  3. Anonymous says:

    If a Tropical Storm watch/warning are insufficient to produce a national ‘stay home if you can’ order, i.e., close schools, etc., then what is? – Your opinions in the replies below please.

    • Anonymous says:

      I like this question. Personally I think we should get to a national ‘table’ of closures and recommended actions, e.g., Storm Watch means schools and most businesses close, Storm Warning means all but essential service closed, as everyone prepares. So there’s no guesswork about what’s closing or opening when.

      I know it won’t work, too many independent thinkers here, which on balance is a good thing. But it would make life easier / more organised. Plus it could be used for different non-storm emergencies as well.

      And we’d need 5 stages
      – Alert, threat imminent, make sure your long-term preperations and plans are done if they aren’t already, i.e., that you have your canned food in if you haven’t been keeping it stocked.
      – Watch, threat soon (or almost over), Category A activities cease, e.g., sporting events cancelled.
      – Warning, threat imminent (or not over yet), Category A & B activities cease, only essential services operating, e.g., schools close down.
      – Active, threat is active, e.g., tropical storm being experienced, all but emergency services cease, so stay off the roads.
      – All Clear, threat over, most infrastructure restored, no reason for people not to go about their normal activities as much as possible.

      (You might notice that the above system allows for a Warning/Watch period after say a hurricane when we want to restrict activities to allow for easier necessary clean-up.)(Obviously hurricanes are our primary concern but the system can be used for any emergency, especially with localised warnings.

  4. Anonymous says:

    a little rain and all this commotion?
    #caymandrama

  5. Anonymous says:

    It’s not safe to open the schools. I know the rain sweeps across the hallways at my son’s school and areas flood out but you all don’t want them spending money on the schools either. I admit that they need to be properly maintained and I know many schools that aren’t being properly maintained. They can post assignments on Everest or send home assignments for the children to do during this time but the same parents that had their children do absolutely nothing will do the same again. I know some children may not have had access to the internet but some did and still wouldn’t do the work.

  6. Cindy Smith says:

    everyone be safe

  7. Anonymous says:

    My private sector office has given us off Monday, so grateful

  8. Anonymous says:

    It’s a beautiful day to educate our children in the Cayman Islands.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Stop closing schools for no reason!

    • Anonymous says:

      6:38 There is a reason F*cktard. A Tropical Storm Warning!

      Clearly, you have not seen the devastation this storm has caused in Honduras and Nicaragua.

    • Anonymous says:

      In case you weren’t paying attention this hurricane season, every major hurricane with the exception of Teddy, has drove by the Cayman Islands!!

      Think buddy, you need to borrow somebody’s cap.

  10. Anonymous says:

    another day off for teachers and civil servants…zzzzzzzzzzzzzz

  11. Anonymous says:

    4:28 pm where do you get your weather reports ? didn’t know John foster was still doing the weather

    • Anonymous says:

      Similar weather.

      Really miss John’s consistency…

    • Anonymous says:

      If Cayman27 was around, maybe we still would have John Foster for weather!!

      Leave the man ‘lone! Better than the screenshots out of CIGtv.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Closing the schools is a wise move. We have already had so much rain and some roads are already quite flooded. Today I saw puddles in places that are usually okay. More rain overnight and on Friday will lead to more flooding of roads and properties. The less vehicles that are on the roads on Friday and Saturday, the better. We already stayed home for the lockdown… seems that we can all stay home on Friday and Saturday to avoid any unnecessary accidents and problems. Give each other a break. Keep safe everyone.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Why is this article saying remnants of Eta when the nhc clearly has it as a tropical storm shortly after it enters the northwestern Caribbean Sea

  14. Anonymous says:

    Public schools already offer terrible education. Regardless, they continue to cancel school.

    Blind leading the blind

    • Anonymous says:

      Ridiculous. Why close schools??

      Keep schools open. Weather will he fine. There is plenty of time to prepare on Saturday if the storm looks like it is coming this way.

      • Anonymous says:

        9:39pm Thank God you’re not given any position in parliament, just stick to being a keyboard warrior and everything should be ok.

      • Anonymous says:

        True, would get plenty people dead with this Trump logic.

    • Anonymous says:

      If it’s so terrible then a day without such an education isn’t all that bad, is it??? Fool.

    • Anonymous says:

      I mean the buildings can close, but why not create a plan to continue learning?

      This entire blind leading the blind narrative involves everyone, parents and all stakeholders.

      Schools are closed and I guarantee some won’t even allow their child to work at home.

      The future of the CI is looking real dismal.

      • Anonymous says:

        I teach at a public school and I mirror your sentiments. A total of 3 days have now been lost to weather conditions. Surely, on those days learning could have continued online. Some contingency must be put in place to lessen the interruptions to learning. I know some teachers will dislike this comment, but when you’re teaching exam groups every day is vital and a day lost is hard to recover.

        • Anonymous says:

          I agree!! We don’t have to lay around all day and then go back to make up the missing days.

          As for those who won’t like the comment, maybe we can go back to sending the workbooks and notebooks home. I just want to know whose idea it was to keep the books in school so that they can look “clean” for the inspectors.

          Public schools are 20 years behind. The excuse is the students have no internet access while the textbooks and workbooks sit in the classrooms.

          Parents need to speak up and start asking questions!!

          #stopfailingourchildren

  15. Anonymous says:

    In fact the 4pm advisory moves things further away (again) and yet another day of our children’s education has been wasted by a handful of people who wanted a four day weekend.

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