Situation Report #5 Hurricane Tomas – Regional Response Teams on the Ground providing support to Saint Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines (as of 5.00 pm, November 3, 2010)

Message: Regional Response Teams continue to provide support to Saint Lucia.

Event: Tomas impacted the CDEMA Participating States of Trinidad and Tobago, Grenada, Barbados, Saint Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines between October 29 and 31, 2010 and caused significant losses and damage to Saint Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Excessive rainfall and high winds have resulted in damage to the housing stock, agriculture sector, road infrastructure, downed power lines and disruption to the utilities sector.

The areas severely affected in St. Vincent and the Grenadines are Park Hill, Chester Cottage, Sandy Bay and Byera on the Windward side of mainland St. Vincent and Chateaubelair, Coulls Hill, Spring Village and Fitz Hughes on the north western side of the island.

Saint Lucia has been severely impacted island wide however, based on aerial reconnaissance, the district of Soufriere appears to be the most affected by Hurricane Tomas with major landslides.  The area remains cut off from the neighbouring communities of Choiseul and Canaries.

A national disaster has been declared in Saint Lucia and disaster areas have been declared in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines from Park Hill to Sandy Bay on the Windward side and Belle Isle to Fitz Hughes on the north western side of the island.

Prognosis: At 5:00 p.m. today, the Centre of Tropical Storm Tomas was located near latitude 14.9 North, Longitude 74.8 West. The Storm is moving toward the North-North West at 6 mph.  

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for Haiti, and a tropical storm watch is in effect for Jamaica, south west of Dominican Republic, the Southern Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos Islands. ,

The forecast suggests that regardless of the exact track and intensity of Tomas, the tropical cyclone will pose a significant threat of heavy rainfall, flooding and potential mud slides over Haiti and the Dominican Republic during the next few days.



Assessments are still ongoing. The reports so far has highlighted that Tropical Storm Tomas has resulted in wide spread roof loss, downed power lines and trees across Barbados.

Approximately, 500 homes have been damaged.

75 to 80 percent of the electrical service to island was disrupted and water supply was significantly reduced in many areas.  

National Actions

The Ministry of Education has advised that all schools will reopen on Thursday, November 4, 2010.

Teams on the ground are continuing with damage assessments. The Barbados Light and Power is working to restore full service to affected areas.

The Red Cross has distributed tarpaulins to 37 families in St. Joseph and St. Andrew. Linens have also been donated by the Barbados Red Cross to the District Emergency Organisations.

St. Vincent and the Grenadines


The National Emergency Management Organisation of St. Vincent and the Grenadines reported today November 3, 2010 that damage assessment is continuing due to the passing of Hurricane Tomas.

Preliminary situation reports are as follows:

  • The shelter population has decreased. There were approximately 685 persons in 26 shelters as of November 3, 2010
  • Approximately 1200 houses damaged and 14 destroyed,
  • Seven (7) Government buildings damaged,
  • Water and power supplies are still affected,
  • Widespread devastation in the banana industry and the tree crop and vegetable sectors are severely affected.

National Actions

The National Emergency Operations Centre is partially activated and damage assessment is continuing.

Efforts are being advanced to relocate shelter residents from schools to community centers to facilitate the reopening of schools on Monday November 8th 2010.

Materials such as tarpaulin has been received from AUSAID.

Distribution of roofing materials in collaboration with Housing and Land Development Corporation has begun.

Distribution of supplies in shelters has also continued

All schools will remain closed for the remainder of the week.

The Relief Supplies and Shelter Management Sub-Committee are still coordinating the relief supplies distribution process.

Road clearing and clean up operations is continuing with the emphasis now on the access and feeder roads leading to farms. Essential services teams have restored about 85-90% of the electricity supply.

All shelters on the Grenadine Islands of Mustique, Bequia and Mayreau were deactivated and closed.

Immediate Needs

  • 2,000 Plastic sheeting
  • 2,000 Hygiene and comfort kits
  • 1,000 blankets
  • Plywood
  • Galvanize sheets
  • Lanterns (non-kerosene)
  • Roofing materials
  • Water jugs

Saint Lucia


Saint Lucia was significantly impacted by major flooding and landslides along with some wind damage.

The John Compton Dam remains inaccessible due to landslide with damage and loss of power reported to its pump hose.

A major concern is the damage caused to the water distribution system in the North of the Island. This may take weeks or months to repair and may be expensive. Emergency water supply will be required.

Communication is still a challenge island wide. Several radio stations remain off air.

There has been major damage to roads and bridges.  The Choc and Bois D’Orange two major bridges on the Gros-Islet highway have been affected.

Disruption to electricity and telecommunication services continues but has been restored in some areas.

The agriculture industry, particularly bananas were severely affected with 100% crop damage.

Soufriere is cut off from the rest of the country.

Significantly affected areas in the south are Soufriere Town, Fond St. Jacques and the district of Canaries where more than 120 families have been significantly impacted.

Over 100 homes have been either completely destroyed, significantly damaged or inundated by mud.

Several schools have been impacted by silting from mud.

Food supplies in many of these areas are also low.

Direction has been given by the Prime Minister on the advice of the Engineers for the immediate evacuation of 1000 persons from Fond St. Jacques to Soufriere to place in the Comprehensive School (approximately 500) and other locations to be defined. The period of relocation is undefined.

A few roads are now opened in Soufriere.

National Actions

The National Emergency Management Organisation is compiling a quantitative assessment on the damage to assist the Saint Lucian Government in informing donor agencies about the level of financial assistance required.

The Ministry of Education has indicated that schools will remain closed for the rest of the week.

Damage assessment and relief supplies distribution are ongoing.

Shelters are opened and occupied in Canaries, Dennery North and South, Vieux –Fort and Gros-Islet. The shelter population is decreasing.
The Hewanorra International Airport opened on November 2, 2010 and international airlines have made arrangements with regional carrier such as LIAT and two local charters to shuttle passengers between the north and south.

Immediate Needs and Priority Actions

  • Safe drinking water
  • Clearing of streets, schools and houses
  • Provision of assistance to affected families (50 households)
  • Health promotion and education as well as re-establishment of primary health services
  • Repair of river banks at the earliest to avoid future floods.
  • Blankets / Coats
  • Buckets
  • Clearing operations
  • Water supply infrastructure
  • Construction material (both tarpaulin for short term and more permanent material)
  • School equipment and supplies
  • Health equipment and supplies
  • Generators

Regional and International Response

1.    The Rapid Needs Assessment Team (RNAT) and the CDEMA Emergency Technical Team was deployed to Saint Lucia on November 1, 2010 continue to be in Saint Lucia and are supporting the national damage assessment teams.

  • The team is focusing on assessments in three priority areas, Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), Health, and Food.
  • As it relates to health, the team will be assessing the damage to the health infrastructure, the extent of disruption to health services and potential risks for waterborne and vector borne diseases outbreaks.
  • WASH assessments will be conducted on the main water supply infrastructure which provides water to the north of the country. The Team will also be assessing the accessibility and availability of food to the affected population.
  • Houses, schools, and shelters in the impacted areas will also be checked by the team.

2.    Through collaboration with CIDA, a water infrastructure specialist was deployed to Saint Lucia this evening, September 3, 2010. He will provide an assessment of and elaboration of the needs as an input to the restoration of the water supply in Saint Lucia.

3.    In response to the needs identified by Saint Lucia, four hundred (400) blankets will be transported to Saint Lucia tomorrow Thursday November 4, 2010 from the sub-regional warehouse.

4.    CDEMA has been informed of the following pledges by international donor groups:

  • United States Agency for International Development /Office of U.S Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA) - US $50,000 to both Saint Vincent and Grenadines and Saint Lucia.
  • Australia Agency for International Development (AusAID) – Aus$100,000 to support CDEMA’s assistance to the affected states.

5.    The Regional Response Mechanism remains on standby. The CARICOM Disaster Relief Unit (CDRU) is also on standby and ready to provide response support should this become necessary.

6.    The IFRC has mobilized resources out of the French Overseas Territories to assist in recovery efforts in Saint Lucia.

7.    CDEMA has initiated action for accessing the CDB grant of US$200,000 for each of the affected States.

8.    The CDEMA Coordinating Unit continues to maintain contact with the impacted Participating States, closely monitoring the situation and coordinating the regional response.

Contact Details: The CDEMA CU 24hr contact number is 1 246 425 0386

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