Damage Assessment of Tropical Depression #2 has been completed

Tropical Depression #2 is behind us, but its aftermath still lingers in southern Belize. A damage assessment concluded on Wednesday and today, we spoke with Chairman of NEMO Stann Creek and Dangriga Mayor, Gilbert Swaso, who told us just how destructive the storm was.

Gilbert Swaso – Chairman of NEMO Stann Creek and Dangriga Mayor:
vlcsnap-2013-06-21-19h23m51s176The total assessment of damage is $338,278. This includes the damage and the assessment to the culverts that were damaged on the Southern Highway, and the bridge on the om the Coastal Road.  The damage that was assessed in the Hope Creek – Mullins River [areas] were mostly household items, and that account [came] to a total of $68,000. Agricultural Damage was reported in Sarawee, Mullins River, Hope Creek and Red Bank and that came to a total of $32,775. In Dangriga there were minimum household items damaged, and the total for that is yet to be accumulated. However there was infrastructural damage, which was recorded and reported to be at $200,000. Certainly this was primarily in the area of New Site 1 and 2.

We asked the Mayor what lessons NEMO Stann Creek has learned from this experience that can be implemented should another storm come its way.

Gilbert Swaso – Chairman of NEMO Stann Creek and Dangriga Mayor:
vlcsnap-2013-06-21-19h26m00s212So when Tropical Depression Number Two impacted and the advisory was given, all the Operational Sub-Committee reported to the EOC and unveiled their plan and [were] fast to operationalize their plan.  Certainly, there were some gaps that were noticed, and we will utilize that experience to further update our plans. Having said that we would also like to advise all the residents in the Stann Creek District and in Dangriga, let us look at where the gaps are in our respective family plan, in our respective Department plan, and put then to the Operational Sub-Committees within the Stann Creek District Emergency Committee.

The Mayor also appealed to residents to take heed to NEMO advisories and use proper judgment to minimize risks as this year promises an above average hurricane season.

Gilbert Swaso – Chairman of NEMO Stann Creek and Dangriga Mayor:
vlcsnap-2013-06-21-19h25m04s171I must at this time take this opportunity to commend all the Public Officers who came out to support the Operational plan of the Stann Creek Emergency Committee. Furthermore, we also like to express our sincere gratitude to the people within the affected areas, for their patience and tolerance.  I would also like to advise, because there were some people who did not want to evacuate when they were asked to, for them to respect and listen to the advise that is given out by NEMO.  This is with a view to prevent any undue risk to those officers that are responding to support the evacuation of those people from the flood-prone or impacted area.

MoHYesterday the Ministry of Health issued an advisory on water contamination in the south, the Mayor says that situation has since been taken care of. The damage assessment report has been submitted to NEMO and the Stann Creek District Emergency Committee is currently awaiting word to determine how the damages will be dealt with for the impacted areas. There is also some flooding in the West. The footage you are looking at is that of the Macal River, which has been rising slightly over the past few days.

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