(Thursday, September 16, 2010 as at 10:00 a.m. AST)

MESSAGE:  Belize reports no major damage from Tropical Storm Karl.

The Event:

Tropical Storm (TS) Karl made landfall in Belize at 7:50 a.m. on Wednesday, September 15, 2010. Winds of approximately 45mph (65 mph near centre), were reported and rainfall was being experienced in the northern sections of Belize. At 8.00am today Thursday, the center of TS Karl was located near latitude 19.7 north and longitude 92.2 west. Karl is moving toward the west-northwest near 9 mph. The center of Karl is forecasted to cross the Southwestern Gulf of Mexico today and be near the coast of mainland Mexico late Thursday or early Friday. Karl is expected to become a Hurricane later today.

As Karl moves away from Belize, rains have been forecasted to continue for another 30 hours. Predictions indicate rainfall measuring 3-5 inches, with up to 8 inches are possible in isolated areas. Residents in the northern districts have been warned to be on high alert as some localized flooding is  expected.

The Situation:
The National Emergency Management Office in Belize has reported that the passage of TS Karl has not resulted in any major damage.  

Power outages and downed utility poles in Freezone along the Belize-Mexican border were reported.  Water crafts were grounded and schools were closed for the day in the northern districts of Corozal & Orange Walk, as well as, San Pedro Town Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker and water crafts were grounded.

The operations of sea faring vessels and light aircraft were resumed at noon on Wednesday.

National Actions:
The Northern Emergency Operations Centre was activated and remains on high alert as it continues to monitor the rainfall over the northern district. Aerial assessment of the impacted areas was undertaken yesterday afternoon.

Regional Actions:
The CDEMA Coordinating Unit has maintained communication with Belize and continues to monitor the situation as the rains persist.

Based on initial assessment reports shared by Belize so far, there will be no need to deploy the Regional Response Mechanism (RRM). CDEMA is therefore standing down the RRM.

CONTACT DETAILS: The CDEMA CU 24-hour contact number 1(246) 425 0386