CYCLONIC SEASON: Prefect Vincent Berton calls for collective resilience


At the 6rd information meeting on the preparation for the 2023 hurricane season organized by the Collectivity where the State signs its 3rd participation, the Delegate Prefect of the Northern Islands invited the population to develop collective resilience.

“The individual resilience of Saint-Martinois to face a major cyclone is indisputable, they know how to organize themselves and do things, it is a big asset compared to the Parisian population” declared the politician. However, emphasis was placed on the progress to be made regarding collective resilience, which he considers to be weak. Waste considered deadly projectiles in the event of a cyclone with strong winds must be evacuated before a major weather phenomenon: "we cannot afford to have piles of waste which create an extremely serious risk, we must move forward on the subject in connection with the Community". Having traveled on the road to hope in 2022 with Bernadette Davis, 2nd VP of the COM, the prefect notes, a year later, the still illegal activity on certain sites and the presence of potential projectiles which risk obstructing the landing strip at Grand-Case airport: "we cannot accept this form of recklessness which endangers the lives of the inhabitants, we must be aware of the consequences of these acts on the collective and we will mobilize justice if necessary”. The hunt for "tramps of the seas" is also a priority for the State. After spending 6M€ to clean the lagoon of post-Irma wrecks, the boats at anchor “in a pitiful state” which will sink in the event of a cyclone will certainly be a problem that the officials will not bear the burden of. Another great lesson to remember after Irma's visit: communication and continuity of information. For the State, it is necessary to guarantee the capacity of the operational center to transmit information again with antennas in operation after the impact, hence the acquisition of a backup antenna and the agreement signed with Radio Saint-Martin and SOS Radio, radio media being considered more responsive in a crisis situation. _VX


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