Video & Text: Today’s Gonzalo Press Conference

October 16, 2014

The last buses will leave Somerset and St. George’s at 6pm today, ferries will end service at 7pm, the Causeway will close at 10am tomorrow and the Royal Navy vessel HMS Argyll is heading to Bermuda, Premier Michael Dunkley said at a press conference today [Oct 16].

The Premier said, “As I said yesterday, it is important that all preparations are completed this afternoon before the winds increase through the night.

“This hurricane is a large storm and we should expect at least 24 hours of storm force winds. During this time I want to encourage everyone to stay inside, and particularly off the roads.

15 minute video of the full press conference

“Significant resources will be positioned in the east end of the Island should there be damage to the Causeway. Likewise, full hurricane plans have been activated by the hospital and other agencies which will ensure responses to emergencies as soon as it is safe to do so.”

“Out of an abundance of caution, the Royal Navy vessel HMS Argyll is heading to Bermuda behind the storm and is available to provide considerable, skilled assistance should we have the need after the hurricane passes Bermuda.

The Premier added that Government schools closed as of 1.30pm today, the last public buses will leave Somerset and St. George’s at 6pm today, ferries will end their service at 7pm, and the Causeway will close at 10:00 a.m. tomorrow.

The Premier’s full statement follows below:

Good afternoon.

Hurricane Gonzalo is continuing on its forecasted track towards Bermuda and therefore everyone should continue to prepare for significant wind and waves starting late tonight.

As I said yesterday, it is important that all preparations are completed this afternoon before the winds increase through the night.

This hurricane is a large storm and we should expect at least 24 hours of storm force winds. During this time I want to encourage everyone to stay inside, and particularly off the roads.

Already, there is very high surf on the South Shore and the department of Parks is placing signs, warning the public that beaches are closed.

No one should take the risk of surfing or attempting to swim in these dangerous conditions.

Bermuda we can be confident in the preparation of all of the responsible agencies both in advance of this hurricane and for any eventuality in the aftermath.

Significant resources will be positioned in the east end of the Island should there be damage to the Causeway.

Likewise, full hurricane plans have been activated by the hospital and other agencies which will ensure responses to emergencies as soon as it is safe to do so.

Out of an abundance of caution, the Royal Navy vessel HMS Argyll is heading to Bermuda behind the storm and is available to provide considerable, skilled assistance should we have the need after the hurricane passes Bermuda.

  • There are some important advisories of which the public should take note:
  • Government schools closed as of 1.30pm today
  • The last public buses will leave Somerset and St. George’s at 6pm today
  • Ferries will end their service at 7pm
  • If your trash has not yet been collected please store it somewhere safe until after the storm
  • There is a shelter available from 3pm today at CedarBridge Academy
  • All residents in low lying residential areas should strongly consider evacuating their homes for higher ground
  • Lastly, the Causeway will close at 10:00 a.m. tomorrow.

The decision to close the Causeway is based on the forecasted, deteriorating conditions throughout Friday.

In the interest of public safety I am encouraging everyone to take notice of this closure and end their Causeway-related travel well before midnight tonight.

Bermuda we are prepared.

Well rehearsed plans for most contingencies are enacted, and as we hope for the best, we are prepared for the worst.

We will come through this and once this serious storm has passed it will be for us to work together to restore our island home to normal.

Thank you and stay safe.

-

For all our coverage of Tropical Storm Fay click here, for all our coverage of Hurricane Gonzalo click here, and for our live blog covering both Gonzalo and Fay click here.

NOTE: Please note we only have the text of the Premier’s speech so we do advise you to watch the entire video to hear the full comments from Police Commissioner Michael DeSilva, BELCO Chief Operating Officer Denton Williams and Bermuda Weather Service Director Kimberley Zuill.

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Comments (4)

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  1. Everyone be safe and stay safe, let nature take it’s course and then we can deal with the aftermath. we come through in times past and we shall come through again,prayers are for all to be safe and remain safe.hoping all homeless has been removed from the street even if they did not want to go, this is something that we have done for years. seniors / rest homes /pets those who can not do for themselves top priority. to all the E.M.O. and all of our emergency personnel we are praying for you to be safe and kept safe even during your duties.

  2. I want to thank all who have / are taking an active role in getting this information / advice out to the general public, assuring us that “all bases are going to be covered” well in advance of Gonzalo actually making landfall…