TORTOLA, British Virgin Islands, Wednesday September 13, 2017 – Caribbean community (CARICOM) Chairman, Grenadian Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell has declared that the regional grouping will undertake a major initiative to support the reconstruction efforts in the islands battered by Hurricane Irma.
The commitment came after Dr Mitchell and CARICOM Secretary General Ambassador Irwin LaRocque yesterday joined a team from the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) to get a first-hand look at the havoc wreaked by the ferocious Category 5 system on Anguilla and the British Virgin Islands.
Stunned by the devastation he witnessed, Ambassador LaRocque endorsed the labelling of Irma as a “nuclear hurricane”.
“When it shook Tortola [in the BVI] as a Category 5 and you have heard it being described as a nuclear hurricane, I now understand what they meant . . . . The damage is just overwhelming,” the Dominican-born diplomat said.
“One can shore up building codes as much as possible – and there is always room for improvement – . . . but with a storm of that ferocity, that intensity and as large as it was . . . the only thing that one could do is pray,” LaRocque told online newspaper Barbados TODAY.