2023 Atlantic Hurricane Season Message from the Premier Hon. Joseph E. Farrell

Citizens, Friends and Residents of Montserrat –greetings to you on this, the first day of the 2023 North Atlantic hurricane season.

As your Premier, I want to take a moment to remind us all that we are now heading into the time of year for which we need to exert extra vigilance.

We are at the start of the Hurricane season which runs annually in the Caribbean from June 1st to November 30th. First early prediction for the 2023 Atlantic season predicts a slightly below normal average with 13 named storms, 6 hurricanes of which three are major hurricanes.

I wish to express gratitude to almighty God for protecting Montserrat over these many years from the impacts of hurricanes and I am hopeful that He will continue to shower us with his favour.

My thanks, are extended to our emergency response and support services, who have been exemplary in keeping us stocked, primed and ready for any impacts we might face. 

To the staff and volunteers within the DMCA, Hospital, Police, Fire, search and Rescue Services, Montserrat Utilities Limited, Public Works Department the Royal Montserrat Defense Force, and our public servants, thank you for your teamwork, efforts and dedication over the years to be ready to respond, for rapid deployment in assessing our safety and for getting us back to full operational capacity after a storm has passed.

My thanks, as well, to the FCDO and UK Royal Navy, who have, over the years, played a significant role in our disaster response efforts, through direct support after impacts, and providing joint training opportunities for our response teams and organizations on the ground. 

I look forward to a continued partnership with all stakeholders who are key to safeguarding and protecting the lives of all of us in the event of natural disasters.

 Residents of Montserrat, you are no stranger to my yearly message of caution and vigilance. I urge you now, if you have not already reviewed your home and business hurricane and Insurance plans, please do so now.

 While doing so, here are a few questions to get you moving.

  • Do your shutters need repairing? 
  • Do you need to undertake cleaning and clearing drain gutters or to remove loose objects from your property to avoid damaging your neighbor’s home? 
  • Have you checked with your elderly neighbors to see what help you can offer as it relates to their readiness in the event of a hurricane, for eg Where will they shelter and who will take them to a shelter if they must leave their homes?
  • Have you reviewed your business continuity plan to ensure that your business can continue to function after a hurricane has impacted and passed? This is a lot of ground to cover especially when a hurricane is approaching.

Often you only have a few hours warning. Please do not leave your preparations until the last minute; it might be too late. Review your hurricane plans today!

As the saying goes, Knowledge is Power, and in the fast paced world of adverse weather patterns it can be the difference between you having time to safeguard your family and home, and being unprepared for the storm. 

I urge all of you to stay tuned into ZJB Radio for the latest weather updates and other instructions. 

Keep monitoring the Disaster Management Coordination Agency’s Facebook page for up to the minute updates on impending storms. 

In this Information Technological age, there are a plethora of weather apps that you can download on your mobile phones and tablets which will provide you with up to the minute weather information and many of these are free – I urge you to make use of them. 

It is important that you stock up on necessary non-perishable food items, water, first aid kits, and your medications so that you will be able to ride out the storm while you remain indoors.

This hurricane season there is even more support available aimed at safeguarding life in the event of a natural disaster and allow the country to return to a level of normality quicker. 

On the 2nd of March this year, Government introduced “The Hurricane Risk Reduction and Resilience Drive Order 13/2023.” This is a programme in which households and businesses are allowed to import hurricane related items free of duty and consumption tax. These items include but are not limited to: 

  • Generators and change over switch
  • Storm shutters
  • Chain saws, 
  • portable lights, 
  • wood chippers, 
  • first aid kits, hammers, torchlights, screw drivers, spanners and more.

The list of items is displayed on the notice board at the office of the legislature at Farara building in Brades or you can access the SRO on your computer or phone by searching for, Montserrat SR&O #13/2023.  Additional information and clarity can be obtained from the ministry of Finance and the Montserrat Customs and Revenue service.

While you are preparing, I urge you to become familiar with the hurricane shelters near you.   A list of these shelters and their locations are printed in the DMCA hurricane guide and, on their face book page and of course Radio ZJB will advise on the same.

If during an impending storm, you are concerned that your home may not be safe, please seek shelter in one of the designated hurricane shelters near you or with a friend or family member.

If it comes down to you having to move into a shelter, please cooperate with the shelter managers. Remember, they are interested in your wellbeing and safety. 

We have been spared from the impact of the impact of hurricanes in recent years; long may that continue, but I urge you now, as I do each year, practice vigilance, be a good neighbor and look out for the vulnerable who have no support. 

Get prepared, Stay Prepared, it only takes one. We are in this together.
May God continue to bless Montserrat.

For Spanish and Haitian Creole Translations click the graphics below.

Spanish Translation
Haitian Creole Translation
Scroll to Top