A freak storm passed through Biscayne Village on Saturday night damaging nine houses. Minister of National Emergency Management Organization, NEMO, and Area Representative for Belize Rural North, Edmund Castro, visited the affected families and, through NEMO, provided assistance to the affected families. According to Castro, the NEMO team delivered immediate relief supplies to the families, including mattresses and food items.
“Some people were in their yards and some people can describe sitting down on their veranda and then all of a sudden they heard the thunder and lightning and boom in a few seconds, they will say it was like 15 minutes but in essence the whirlwind will only pass through within five or six minutes and then they are gone but the destruction and the trail that they leave behind is tremendous and its really bad. An old man on mile 25 going up on the left hand side he lost everything, his house was completely destroyed but he is trying his best to put himself together.”
“Fortunately no one got hurt.”
“No one was hurt from this freak storm, everybody heard the noise and decided to look out for each other and scream and yell at each other to have them see that something was about to happen so they secured themselves so no life was lost. Within the first hour of this storm we had NEMO personnel on the ground, myself included, out there assessing the damage and looking at the situation to determine whether we needed to open a shelter or not and in most cases for this one family members were able to work with each other and secure themselves. We have a couple people who were able to put together some pieces so that they could not get wet. But from NEMO’s point of view within one hour NEMO personnel had been on the ground on Saturday. I left out there at around 9pm talking about all the family members that had been affected and one Sunday we returned with some mattresses, some food and some other things like that so we could try to help them until sometime maybe by Wednesday we will look at the situation after we do the complete assessment in terms of what we will need in terms of zinc or other materials. In most of the cases about 9 families really got affected in this storm. So most of those families we will try to give them the self-help with some supervision so that they could get back their stuff together.”
Castro says that the affected homes are being assessed to determine what kind of assistance is needed for rebuilding and repairs.