Never forget

Never forget

Tropical Storm Fiona did not appear to have made a huge impact on the immediate local area, but particularly Guadeloupe was reportedly hit hard by torrential rains measured at 19.46 inches in the southeast mountains within 24 hours since late Saturday morning, prompting widespread flooding and mudslides. Although not a powerful cyclone yet at the time, it was already large and rather slow-moving, causing the atmospheric effects to last from Friday afternoon up to Sunday evening.
The system battled with wind shear and was still a bit disorganised when it approached the islands. Maximum sustained winds varied between 50 and 60 miles per hour despite some reported gradual strengthening.
However, with most severe weather northeast of the centre, tropical storm winds out 140 miles mainly to the north and its projected forecast track coming as close as 50 miles south of St. Maarten, there was enough reason for concern and the precautions taken. In the end, Fiona kept her distance of 100 miles or more and storm-force winds also retreated to 125 miles out from the centre.
While gale force gusts could be experienced, it hardly regarded sustained winds. Consequently, structures were not blown down or away, although some trees fell also due to the water-saturated soil.
Locally there was significant street flooding, but mostly in familiar spots and not to the extent that assistance from emergency services was required. One can therefore speak of a relatively uneventful passage of the sixth named storm of the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season.
So far, so good, but that does not go for all our Caribbean brothers and sisters. What is now Hurricane Fiona made landfall in and drenched southern Puerto Rico before moving on to the Dominican Republic’s northeast coast and is next expected to head for Bermuda, possibly as major, catastrophic hurricane.
Let us keep in mind all others threatened by this and other natural as well as man-made disasters, hoping that they too may be spared the worst. Never forget to count your blessings.

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