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View of Buck Island from East End, St. Croix, USVI
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Hurricane Maria, St. Croix, USVI

With Hurricane Maria approaching and St. Croix, and the U.S. Virgin Islands officially being in a ‘Hurricane Warning’, we at GoToStCroix.com would like to give you the most up-to-date information and resources we know of. According to the National Hurricane Center, a ‘Hurricane Warning means that hurricane conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area. Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion.’ Here is what you need to know for both before and after a predicted hurricane:

Public Hurricane Advisories & Updates

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) operates the National Hurricane Center website, which issues public advisories on potential and active storms at 8am, 11am, 5pm, 8pm, and 11pm daily. These advisories include Tropical Storm watches and warnings, Hurricane watches and warnings, as well as graphics showing the probable wind speeds and areas that may be effected. Please monitor this website closely: www.nhc.noaa.gov.

 Sandbag Distribution

If you need sandbags to protect your property, the Virgin Islands Territorial Emergency Management Agency (VITEMA) lists the locations and times sandbags are available for pick up on their Facebook page: www.facebook.com/vitema/. The Department of Public Works will issue up to six (6) sandbags per household, and they recommend bringing your own shovel to fill the bags in case there is a long line for sandbags.

 Safe Lists

In the event that St. Croix is hit by a hurricane, obviously your loved ones will want to know that you are safe as soon as possible. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) recommends that you register at the Red Cross ‘Safe and Well’ website or check in via social media as soon as it is possible for you to do so. There is also a Facebook page called ‘St. Croix Hurricane Maria Check In’ that has been created by locals here on St. Croix which you can join at: www.facebook.com/groups/132879024005632/. Please be sure to let your loved ones know, before the storm is due to come, that in the event of a hurricane they should search for your name on the ‘Safe and Well’ site and/or the Facebook page once the storm has passed. The Red Cross ‘Safe and Well’ page can be found at: safeandwell.communityos.org/cms/index.php.

 Federal Disaster Assistance

In the event of a hurricane here, FEMA will set up an information page in addition to physically getting aid to the island as soon as possible. If you can get an internet connection or cellphone service to use your data, please make sure to check out the latest information from FEMA at: www.fema.gov.

 

Everyone please be as prepared as possible, and we here at GOTO will continue to provide information and resources as they become available, and as communications allow us to. Stay safe!

– Jennie Ogden, Editor

 

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