Maria Causes Businesses to Close in St. Kitts as Precautionary Measure


In the end, apart from gusty winds and heavy showers between 1:00am-2:00am Saturday and again in the late afternoon, (around 6:00pm), the storm offered no real threat to either property or lives. No serious reports were reported about flooding, though in some northern districts the rainfall was continuous for most of the afternoon.

Quite a number of local businesses seemed to have responded positively to requests from the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, to allow their staff adequate time to head home to complete their storm preparations.

The main shopping district of Basseterre was extremely busy on Friday afternoon with hundreds of residents completing last minute shopping for groceries and home repair items, as well as flashlights, batteries and other supplies that would have been necessary in the event of a direct and severe hit by the storm.Maria-at-5pm--Saturday--10-Sept-2011

However on Saturday morning and late into the afternoon most downtown stores, restaurants, supermarkets, shops and other commercial enterprises, remained closed for the day.

All ferry services were suspended and air access was curtailed though public transportation was for the most parts operational throughout the day.

The centre of Maria, at 5:00pm on Saturday, according to the National Hurricane Centre in Miami, was located near latitude 17.9 North and Longitude 62.4 West. Maria was at the time moving toward the northwest, near 14mph and this general motion was expected to continue during the next day or two.

St. Kitts and Nevis is located 17.20 N and 62.45 W.

On the forecast track, Maria is expected to move away from the Leeward Islands on Sunday.

The maximum sustained winds were 45mph. It was, at 5:00pm, about 245 miles east of San Juan Puerto Rico. Little change in strength is forecast during the next 48 hours.

There are no coastal watches or warning in effect for St. Kitts & Nevis


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