Barbadian students living in The Bahamas are taking no chances with Hurricane Matthew.
As the powerful storm barrels towards that country, the 21 Barbadians who are pursuing tourism studies at the Center of Hotel and Tourism Management in Nassau have been making preparations for the Category four system, which forecasters say is likely to bring torrential rains, gusty winds and dangerous storm surge to the Bahamas after hammering Haiti and Cuba.
Secretary Treasurer of the Students Guild Jalisa Cumberbatch told Barbados TODAY one teacher had taken charge of the student body and had formed a WhatsApp group chat to keep them informed about the progress of the system and other emergency information.
“All the Barbados students also have a WhatsApp messaging system, so if we have any issues we will just message each other through the chat,” Cumberbatch said.
She said they had been warned to expect the system late tonight or early tomorrow and they had been busy ensuring they were ready for its passage.
“At the moment, the landlord is preparing the windows, getting sandbags to stop the water from flowing into doors . . . . Everyone is still trying to get their stuff done before the rain starts to fall.
“I have personally stocked up on water, non-perishable food items and important documents are sealed,” the student representative told Barbados TODAY.
Forecasters say The Bahamas is likely to be in the direct path of Matthew from Wednesday into Friday.
“The slow-moving nature of the hurricane will translate to days rather than hours of pounding surf, high winds and heavy rain on the Bahamas.
“In addition to life-threatening conditions, major property damage and inundation is likely due to powerful winds, storm surge and flash flooding.
“A storm surge of 10-15 feet can occur, along with the potential for a foot or more of rain on some of the Bahamas,” AccuWeather Meteorologist Mike Doll said.