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BVI launches 2010 hurricane campaign to reassure those taking Caribbean holidays this summer

The BVI Governor has joined the BVI Department of Disaster Management to launch its Hurrican Preparedness Campaing, which is sending out a clear and informative message to residents and prospective travellers to prepare for the hurricane season this year.

BVI launches 2010 hurricane campaign to reassure those taking Caribbean holidays this summer

Preparing Caribbean holidays ahead of what is expected to be an active hurricane season, with the intention of disclosing detailed information to travelllers and residents, the British Virgin Islands Department of Disaster Management has began its Hurricane Preparedness Campaign on Tuesday with a clear message from the Governor and the presentation of a paper summarising the various predictions and key issues that need to be considered in preparation for this summer season. The theme for this year’s Campaign is “Stay Alert, Stay Alive”.

Currently, British Virgin Islands holidays and Caribbean holidays in general have been warned by Forecasts of the Atlantic Seasonal Hurricane Activity for 2010 issued by Colorado State University and NOAA, which anticipates that the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season will be characterised by above-average activity. Scientists are predicting that the 2010 Atlantic Hurricane Season will have significantly more activity than the average 1950-2000 season with about 8 hurricanes expected, 15 named storms, 75 named storm days, 35 hurricane days, 4 intense hurricanes and 10 intense hurricane days.

However, it must be stressed that those planning to take Caribbean holidays this summer season need not fear as it is very unlikely that hurricanes will cause long-term disturbance to their holidays in the Caribbean, as they usually last about only a day or a maximum of two.

Forecasters have cited 2 main reasons for their predictions, noting that the combination of these will lead to favourable conditions for hurricane formation and intensification. These reasons included a weakening of the El Nino Conditions and the favorable Atlantic Basin Conditions.

Throughout the Summer and Autumn season, which runs from 1st June to 30th November, the DDM will partner with all local media, audio, video, print and electronic to issue public service announcements and other types of information that provides guidance for residents as they make their preparations this Hurricane Season.

In the same way, the Government of British Virgin Islands wants to make available as much information as possible to travellers so that they know what a hurricane is really all about, how tourism infrastructures are readily prepared for such events and how efficiently they evacuate holidaymakers from danger zones into safer areas at other hotels.

Information and Education Manager, Linton Leonard urged residents and visitors to pay close attention to the information being broadcast or printed and to ensure that they remain in a heightened state of readiness for the next six months. - “A number of new activities will be included in the Campaign this year including a partnership with the BVI Tourist Board in the distribution of fliers designed for the Tourism Sector, the inclusion of local artists in the scripting, videotaping and voicing of announcements, a full supplement in the local newspapers, provision of information for the Spanish speaking community, the use of the e-blast technique and other Information and Communications Technology to ensure that the messages are reaching all cross sections of our community.”

But all in all, we must stress that hurricanes are not always as scary as they seem if the countries affected are readily prepared in advance and people remain under safe roofs and sturdy buildings during the few hours of the hurricane passing. What many holidaymakers on Caribbean holidays fear and panic about usually doesn't last longer than a couple of days, with the actual hurricane passing rarely lasting more than 4 hours and the heavy rains not lasting longer than a day or two.

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