Cayman Islands

Hurricane Emily: NHC declares all clear

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UPDATE ON HURRICANE EMILY

Key Message:

The National Hurricane Committee has issued the All Clear for all three islands as Hurricane Emily continues on her west- northwesterly path at 20mph. With the 7 am advisory from the National Hurricane Centre in Miami placing Hurricane Emily 115 miles southwest of Grand Cayman, Emily is quickly moving away from our area.

While weather conditions are expected to remain wet and windy through this morning, conditions will gradually improve throughout the course of the day as Emily gradually retreats from our area.

Meanwhile, Emily is expected to continue its west-northwest track, with the centre expected to reach the Yucatan Peninsula very late today (Sunday) or early Monday.

NHC advice to local population: Residents should certainly be in no great rush to start moving around on the roads unless they absolutely have to. The good news for everyone is the bad news for would-be sightseers - there is really nothing dramatic to see as a result of Emily!

Utilities: Telephone and electricity services were not affected and the water will be back on-line later today.

Aviation: Airport activities will resume around noon and persons wanting to travel today are advised to contact their carrier.

Shelters: Some 700 people stayed in hurricane shelters overnight. Shelters will be closing today as people returns to their homes. Total shelter capacity for Hurricane Emily was 4000.

"We have all been extremely fortunate once more to have been spared the potential wrath of a very serious storm. I'm extremely pleased to have seen the efforts made by so many people to prepare for 'the worse' while praying for the best. In this business, it is simply the only smart thing to do.

The NHC is particularly grateful for the strong support and active involvement of the Cabinet and indeed all parliamentarians.

And I am personally grateful to all of my many colleagues who contribute to the NHC efforts and make my role so easy", said Chairman Donnie Ebanks.

Current conditions:

Grand Cayman

- Winds: East to Southeast 35 to 45 knots with higher gusts this morning becoming 15 to 25 knots by evening.

- Rain: Sporadic showers.

- Seas: Rough with wave heights of 9 to 12 feet. All small craft should remain in safe harbour.

Details of Weather System, at 7 am:

- Longitude: 82.8 W

- Latitude: 18.3 N

- Proximity: 115 miles SW of Grand Cayman

- Speed of system and direction of movement: 20 mph, WNW

- Maximum sustained wind speed: 150 mph, still a strong Category 4

Further Information

This is the last bulletin that will be issued by the NHC in respect of Hurricane Emily.

Background

The following Saffir/Simpson Hurricane Scale provides some rough guidance on what to expect for each category:

  • Category 1 74-95 mph, storm surge of 4-5ft.
  • Category 2 96-110 mph, 6-8 ft.
  • Category 3 111-130 mph, 9-12 ft.
  • Category 4 131-155 mph, 13-18 ft.
  • Category 5 greater than 155 mph, 18+ft.
Quick reference guide to the Cayman Islands:

GOVERNMENT : An Overseas Territory of the United Kingdom with a governor appointed by the Crown, a 15-member elected Legislative Assembly, and an 8-member Cabinet.

Location :The three Cayman Islands, Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman, are located about 150 miles south of Cuba, 460 miles south of Miami, Florida, and 167 miles northwest of Jamaica. George Town, the capital, is on the western shore of Grand Cayman.

Geography: Grand Cayman has an area of about 76 square miles and is approximately 22 miles long. Cayman Brac, with an area of about 15 square miles and 12 miles long, lies about 89 miles northeast of Grand Cayman. Little Cayman, lying five miles west of Cayman Brac, is approximately ricane season lasts from June to November. In the 52 years from 1950 to 2002, Grand Cayman has experienced seven tropical storms and six hurricanes. The worst disaster was suffered in 1932 when 109 persons died, followed by Hurricane Ivan in 2004, when two died along with extensive damage to infrastructure.