Dominica not taking any chances with Dorian

Prime Minister of Dominica Roosevelt Skerrit giving an update on Tropical Storm Dorian Tuesday.

Authorities in Dominica are being hypervigilant as Tropical Storm Dorian makes its way up through the region.

In a press conference Tuesday, Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit gave public servants leave to return to the safety of their homes immediately and urged the private sector to allow their employees to do the same.

‘The safety of our citizens and residents is always paramount.’

—PM Roosevelt Skerrit

He said the cabinet had taken the decision based on the fact that it had been raining since the weekend and more rainfall was projected.

“We do not believe there are any major threats, but we are mindful of the vulnerabilities in some parts of the country and we felt it necessary to take this precautionary decision,” said PM Skerrit.

He added: “The safety of our citizens and residents is always paramount. We don’t want a situation where any persons are unable to make it home because of rivers overflowing their banks or possible mudslides or landslides.

Earlier this week, Dominica was under Tropical Storm Watch. In its 8 p.m. bulletin, the US-based National Hurricane Center said that the passage of Dorian could result in 1 to 4 inches of rainfall to Dominica, which suffered massive devastation with Hurricane Maria in 2017 and Tropical Storm Erika in 2015.

Damage from Hurricane Maria was estimated to be US$1.3 million or 224 per cent of the country’s GDP. TS Erika caused US$483 million in damage or 90 per cent of the country’s GDP.