The country’s 2022 list of hurricane shelters – some 65 in total – has been released by the National Office of Disaster Services (NODS).
The list, which went into circulation on Monday, July 4, includes
25 structures, which comprise community centres, churches, schools and other safe buildings that are spread throughout the 17 disaster districts in Antigua and Barbuda.
As part of a project undertaken by the Department of the Environment (DOE), a few structures were selected for upgrading and added to this year’s list.
“Among the improvements made were the installation of solar panels, hurricane shutters, water-catchment facilities, ramps and extra bathroom space for the physically challenged,” NODS reports.
Meanwhile, residents are reminded that, when going to a public shelter, they should take along non-perishable or canned foods and water to last for at least three days.
Additionally, a change of clothes, sheets or blankets on which to sleep, and personal hygiene items should be taken along.
According to NODS officials, if children are part of a family staying at a shelter, items like games, toys and reading books should be packed, as well.
Residents are advised that no animals of any sort will be allowed in the shelters; so alternate arrangements should be made for them, NODS says.
Persons staying at the shelters must adhere to the guidelines that have been put in place for the efficient operation of the facilities, the disaster-management agency advises.
Public shelters are managed by a team of volunteers from the various District Disaster Committees that are part of the national disaster system coordinated by NODS.