The Barbados-based Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) has said it is still gathering information on the full extent of the devastation caused by Hurricane Irma.
The powerful Category 5 hurricane carved a path of destruction in the northern Caribbean killing at least ten people.
Executive Director of CDEMA Ronald Jackson, said at a press conference on Wednesday afternoon that information is still being gathered and significant damages are expected.
“We don’t have all the full details from the British Virgin Islands at the moment but given that the eye passed directly over Tortola, given the physical geographical conditions . . . we anticipate there should be significant needs being generated by the impact of the most severe aspects of the storm,” he said. “We expect to see significant damage as a result.”
He said CDEMA is working to deploy teams into Antigua, hopefully by Thursday “mindful that our plans may be varied somewhat by the fast advancing storm Jose, which is moving within the wake of Irma and showing some signs that it could move along similar path.”
“This means that there is a potential for secondary impacts for the north Leeward Islands (and) that is being factored into our plans for the moment, but for now we are hoping to deploy into Antigua as our focal point to serve the needs Anguilla, the British Virgin Islands from that point,” he stated.
He said while teams are being deployed, CDEMA is turning its attention and positioning teams to respond to potential impacts in Turks and Caicos Islands, the Bahamas.
“Already we have on standby military engineers and doctors to respond to the needs of Turks and Caicos and Bahamas,” he said, adding that relief supplies are also being mobilised.