After a long drought in Belize, the long weekend saw incessant rains in various parts of the country. Videos and pictures of flooded areas in the north, south and west circulated showing streets and thoroughfares inundated with water. Deputy Chief Meteorologist, Derrick Rudon spoke to our news centre about the weekend rains and what we can expect in the coming days. While the rains have eased up for today, we sat down with the Deputy Chief Meteorologist, Derrick Rudon who told us about the weekend’s rainfall and what we can expect in the coming days.
Derrick Rudon, Deputy Chief Meteorologist: “Everybody got some rain but the north didn’t get as much as the south. Punta Gorda recorded the highest rainfall with a one day total on Monday of just under eight inches so that’s a lot of rain and flooding was reported in Punta Gorda Town. I think there was flooding also recorded in San Ignacio, some street flooding. So Belmopan got about two inches on Monday so we don’t know exactly what happened in San Ignacio at this time. Tropical Depression 15 is very close to Afrirca and it will not affect us in any way, in fact it’s not even forecast to become a storm. There’s an area about 500 miles east of the Windward Islands, that is not going to affect us either in the next four days. In fact you know a system crossed this weekend and then the weather has cleared up and improved and we expect generally good weather to continue for the next four to five days.”
In the Toledo District, the rains continued unabated resulting in cancelled classes for some schools as per instructions from the Ministry of Education. According to our Toledo Correspondent, Paul Mahung, members of the National Emergency Management Organization for Toledo met yesterday as part of their preparation and response plan. Correspondent Paul Mahung has the details.
Paul Mahung, Toledo Correspondent: NEMO Toledo met to prepare for possible flooding in flood prone areas in the Toledo District. Rainfall Sunday night and into Monday have caused NEMO Toledo to meet and prepare for flood operations and for NEMO Toledo public advisories as explained by NEMO Toledo Coordinator Kenton Parham.
Kenton Parham, NEMO Toledo Coordinator: “We want to advise all residents living in low lying and flood prone areas in the Toledo district to be on alert for flash flooding and to make necessary preparations and to move to higher ground with either family, friends or in the event that they need to a public shelter. Residents in these areas are asked to secure their homes and their personal belongings and to elevate it above the anticipated flood level. Village chairpersons and river monitors are asked to continue to monitor rivers and warn residents and also to report to NEMO on the rising levels of the river. These areas are Blue Creek, San Benito Poite, Criquesarco, Bella Vista, Bladden, Big Falls, Santa Ana, Book Creek, Golden Stream, in Punta Gorda Town the Magoon area and Indianville area and Hopeville. Residents in Punta Gorda Town especially are advised that the Toledo Community College will be accessible in the event that they need to move to a shelter.”
Paul Mahung, Toledo Correspondent: Parham commented that NEMO Toledo will continue to monitor the rainy weather conditions and remains on standby to respond to any flooding incident reported to NEMO Toledo. Several streets and residential areas especially in Indianville section of Punta Gorda experienced flooded conditions.
According to a senior official from NEMO, their committees remain alert on standby for activation. The Atlantic hurricane season ends in about seven weeks.