Caribbean Faces Heavy Losses after Tropical Storm Nicole

In Jamaica, estimates indicate that it will cost the government just over $11.7 billion to repair the damages wreaked by the devastating rains associated with Tropical Storm Nicole. Most of this is needed for restoration of roads, including drainage systems, river protection and infrastructure works, which will require $10.6 billion. In a statement to the House of Representatives on October 5, 2010, Prime Minister Bruce Golding, said that approximately $1.7 billion is required for clearance and immediate works to roads that are blocked or have collapsed, as well as structures that pose a danger.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries’ estimate for damaged farm roads is $500 million, with crop and livestock loss also at $500 million. Damage to schools is estimated at $100 million; damage to health facilities is estimated at $98.5 million.

The Prime Minister assured that critical response agencies such as the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM), National Works Agency (NWA), National Water Commission (NWC), Jamaica Public Service Company (JPS), local authorities, security forces, and the fire and health services, have been trying to restore and maintain vital services.

Around 211 communities across the island are still surrounded by water, while others have been marooned due to issues with road access. Various groups have been working tirelessly to airlift food and other supplies to the marooned communities.

Barbados also faced heavy rains and flooding. In the photo above, Renaldo Ramsay, a young animal farmer from Arch Hall (St Thomas, Barbados) had no idea his stock was under threat by rising flood waters until his neighbors informed him. The 24-year-old entrepreneur had to move quickly to save his 75-odd prized Black Belly sheep from the submerged pens.

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Photo and Ramsay story from

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