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Mytcar34
(@Mytcar34)
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February 28, 2012 6:20 pm  

Ok what do you folks do about storms? You should be the experts. Here in the Gulf Coast of Texas if its a bad one we leave, not so bad we board up and hang on.Are there shelters on the island.


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speee1dy
(@speee1dy)
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February 28, 2012 6:22 pm  

there are shelters here in stx, i am sure stt and stj have them. but really, why go someplace you know nothing about structure wise. unless you know the place you are living in is not well constructed or prone to flooding.

most people stay in their houses put up the shutters etc.....


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Alexandra
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February 28, 2012 7:44 pm  

Ok what do you folks do about storms? You should be the experts. Here in the Gulf Coast of Texas if its a bad one we leave, not so bad we board up and hang on.Are there shelters on the island.

The USVI is so far south and east that very few storms actually impact us in any given year. Really big storms are a rarity anywhere, and for one to hit a specific small dot in the ocean is a lot less likely than for that same storm to wind up in Florida.

You can check out historical information on all the Atlantic storms in any year on the NOAA website here:
http://www.aoml.noaa.gov/general/lib/lib1/nhclib/mwreviews.html

As an example, this is the link for the 2005 season that had so many named storms they went into the Greek Alphabet. Look at the composite storm track map on page 3... not a single one of those storms came near these islands.
http://www.aoml.noaa.gov/general/lib/lib1/nhclib/mwreviews/2005.pdf

If you live on a boat, you probably want to make it as secure as possible and ride out the storm on shore in a friend's concrete home. Most people stay in their own homes or have a few friends come to hang out for a Hurricane Party so you have people to be with during the experience.

A wise resident does prepare for the possibility of storms. Make sure you have basic food, water, candles, batteries and medical supplies available during storm season. Cash, too, as ATMs don't work for a while after a storm and banks may not be open for a few days. If you don't have a propane stove in your property, you may want to invest in a small camp stove or even a propane BBQ to be able to cook during power outages. You don't have to do a LOT of crazy stuff to be prepared. People look out for each other during storms, too.

One of the most important things you can do is add the links to several of the top weather websites to the address bar on your computer and click them daily during storm season to be sure you are up to date on anything heading our way. Advance notice gives you time to make last minute preparations if you need to close hurricane shutters, etc.


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blu4u
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February 28, 2012 8:31 pm  

Don't be fooled. Storms hit the VI. Always prepare. Always have a plan. Know your neighbours. Decide in advance if you will shellter in place or with friends. Talk to your neighbors and friends. Work together. Leaving is usually not an opition. Air lines normally discontiune service in advanced antipation of a strom and passengers with pre-booked return tickets (ie tourist have priority) .

My family lost EVERYTHING (except our lives and bank account) in 1995. Have good insurance. Take a video of your residence and car and business and copies of you insurance records. Store copies off island. Bea use the territory is isolated by water, help is slow to arrive (weeks/months with no electric or supplies) rebuilding and recovery take time. Don't count on insurance to cover the entirety of a catastrophic loss.


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blu4u
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February 28, 2012 8:57 pm  

The USVI is so far south and east that very few storms actually impact us in any given year. Really big storms are a rarity anywhere, and for one to hit a specific small dot in the ocean is a lot less likely than for that same storm to wind up in Florida.

DISAGREE. Sorry. Tromical stoms genrate off the coast of Africa and feed off warm water temps. Huricanes disapate over land. Given 1) the area of the vi v. the area of fla. 2) the isalnd topagraphy, 3) mean ocean temps, a Vi resident is much more likely to be impacted by a major storm. Also the likehood of cat 4+ juricane combining with a tornado is more likely over an small island than a penisual.

Fla residents can gas up the car, drive 30 minutes in land. and watch the action forma rented room at the holiday inn. Vi residents nail-up the house, sit in the basement and hope for the best.

Some years we are lucky Some years not so lucky. Just a matter of time.


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STXBob
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February 28, 2012 9:08 pm  

About once a year in the USVI, we go through “the drill” of putting up hurricane shutters, taking furniture inside, etc. Most of the time, the storm either misses us by a comfortable distance or weakens, but every 5 years or so, we get clobbered pretty good. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best.


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Paula
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February 28, 2012 9:59 pm  

We live on the Gulf Coast of Texas also and I know what you're talking about. We went through Rita (2 wks after Katrina) and then Ike (the eye went directly over our hometown) . After only losing trees and power we felt very lucky. It's all very stressful, though, and after Ike we decided to leave town, head down to St Croix to relax and get away from hurricane cleanup the not so lucky people were dealing with--- and late bloomer Omar goes over St Croix where we're back to dealing with power outage and downed (smaller) trees! You just never know.

I think the above posters have given you excellent advice! I read the book 'Disaster in Paradise:The Night the Roofs Went Flying' by Robert Foster (7 left on Amazon) It is a true account of Mr. Foster's experience during hurricane Hugo. He lived on the east end near Pull Point. Eye opening. When we lived on St Croix back in the 70's a hurricane came near enough so that I remember my family wondering where we should go in case it came over St Croix. My parents decided to do like we did once before back in Texas and stay at the local school. Luckily it veered either south or north of the Virgin Islands and we didn't have to deal with going anywhere. That hurricane ended up hitting the Gulf Coast of Texas by the way!

Paula


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stxem
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February 28, 2012 11:40 pm  

Last year it seemed like every week we were in the line of fire of some storm or another. Irene was the only one that made a direct hit, but to me, last years season seemed to drag on with all the false alarms.


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islandtyme
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February 28, 2012 11:41 pm  

Oh my Paula two storms back 2 back - Yikes!!
Omar was all the hurricane I ever want to experience........lived out east & we were hit hard too, breaking phone poles into 1/2's & quarters, no wapa for over a month.........threw my back out putting up stinking plywood over windows..........fun times........ NOT!


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Exit Zero
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February 29, 2012 12:15 pm  

There are shelters that will be open on all 3 big Virgin Islands - but you would usually secure your living quarters with shutters and have a good stock of well thought out preparations on hand - if the storm is anything of the magnitude of Hugo 1989 or Marilynn 1995 you must expect months of no power, widespead devastation, severe shortages of any supplies, many closed businesses and services, long lines at every point of necessary supplies[ ice,fuel,banks, any stores,etc.] , curfews, total lack of tourism and then expect to be part of a community that rallies together to rebuild the island.
There have been quite a few excellent posts on this forum detailing the kind of preparations recommended and a good search should turn them up if you are interested.


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