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UWI Science Info: 6 Things about Preparing for the Hurricane Season during the Pandemic

Dr. Barbara Carby, Director, Disaster Risk reduction Centre, UWI states six things we must bear in mind about preparing for the current active hurricane season during the pandemic.

  1. Adjustments to disaster risk reduction planning must include addressing shelter space and layout, preparedness training, long-term stress management, the contrasting requirements for hurricane and pandemic responses, and the possibility of multiple waves of COVID-19 infections.
  2. Recovery planning must also consider the possibilities of long-term shelter needs as well as both hurricane and COVID 19 recovery financing given that the potential exists for impact from more than one major hurricane while COVID-19 is still a threat.
  3. In addition to standard supplies, emergency shelters need to include disposable masks, gloves, fluid resistant aprons, PPEs for managers, and other pandemic specific supplies.
  4. Precautionary public service messages need to be redone to explain the differences in approach to preparedness due to COVID-19 and should ideally contain a combination of hurricane and COVID-19 messages
  5. The region must plan for post-impact management of external humanitarian personnel and supplies depending on the status of the borders.
  6. The combination of threats provides opportunities for learning and innovation in damage assessment, disaster management, and technology use in other major events

To hear more from Dr. Carby check out her talk “Can we prepare for COVID & An Active Hurricane Season?” presented at the virtual mini-conference on “COVID-19 and the Environment: For Better for Worse” staged on World Environment Day June 2020 by the Faculty of Science and Technology (go to time stamp 1:39:00)


To see all talks from “COVID-19 and the Environment: For Better for Worse 


To learn about the UWI’s Disaster Risk Reduction Centre (DRRC) including their graduate programmes:

Published on 13 Aug, 2020

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