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BVI national emergency operations to be deactivated

Saturday, November 18, 2017

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TORTOLA, British Virgin Island (CMC) — Governor of the British Virgin Islands (BVI) Augustus Jaspert says that the National Emergency Operations Centre (NEOC) is being deactivated.

He said the NEOC will officially deactivate on Monday adding that the decision was made after consulting with Premier Dr Orlando Smith and Director of the Department of Disaster Management (DDM), Sharleen DaBreo.

The trio jointly heads the soon-to-be-discontinued emergency centre, which was activated on September 4 in response to the threat of Hurricane Irma.

The governor said deactivating the NEOC shows that the BVI has moved from hurricane response mode to a 'period of recovery and continued development'.

“Although emergency operations are being discontinued, the DDM will remain on high alert for the remainder of the year. Be mindful that we are in one of the wettest periods of the year and we must remain in a state of preparedness.”

The Governor said though the NEOC is being deactivated, he expects relief will continue to be provided to the most vulnerable.

Jaspert further said he is pleased with recovery efforts so far. He made special mention of the BVI Electricity Corporation which is spearheading efforts to restore the territory's electricity infrastructure.

Approximately 90 per cent of the territory's electricity distribution system was damaged after Hurricane Irma.

The category 5 weather system smashed into the BVI on September 6 causing massive and widespread destruction to public and privately-owned property. The hurricane also disrupted several businesses and caused increased unemployment.

The BVI government alone has lost more than US$16 million in revenue.

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