AUTHORITIES are warning islanders to prepare, now, for the impending arrival of monstrous Hurricane Igor, which they say will be a direct hit.
The Emergency Measures Organisation (EMO) met today and has this evening urged the Island’s residents to begin hurricane preparations by securing their properties and stocking up on hurricane supplies.
Premier Dr. Ewart Brown has already cancelled a planned trip to the United States where he was to receive an award.
Bermuda can expect tropical storm force winds sometime around midnight Saturday and even worse conditions late Sunday around midnight when the current forecast is for a direct hit.
The EMO statement adds: “Residents are advised to take the warnings seriously as the Island has not experienced such an intense storm since Hurricane Fabian hit Bermuda in 2003.”
Fabian, you’ll recall, killed four people during its full blast as they attempted to drive across the Causeway. They were three police officers and a civilian.
The EMO continues, “By 3p.m. on Sunday, 50 knot east to south east winds are expected and winds will continue to increase and reach sustained hurricane force by 6 p.m. Sunday and continue through the night.
“If the island sustains a direct hit as is the current forecast, it also means 90-knot sustained winds with gusts above 115 knots (132mph); coastline areas can expect storm surges of 5 – 7 feet above normal tide levels; seas inside the reef are expected to rise 9 – 12 feet and outside the reef, there will be waves of 20 – 30 feet”
The hurricane is also expected to drop as much as five inches of rain on the Island.
The EMO confirmed that Government Ministries, the Bermuda Regiment, Bermuda Fire & Rescue Service and the Bermuda Police Service are all in a state of readiness for the hurricane.
Scheduled airline flights to and from this Island over the weekend will be affected by the weather and airline passengers should check with their respective airlines.
Minister of Labour, Home Affairs and Housing, Senator the Hon. Lt. Col. David A. Burch, OBE (Mil), ED JP said the EMO is monitoring the weather conditions.
Latest forecast for Igor
As of 9 p.m. Wednesday night Igor was around 800 nautical miles to our South East moving at 8 MPH.
The National Hurricane Center said it was packing winds of 135 MPH. It was classified as a category four.
It’s expected to hit Bermuda late Saturday, early Sunday.