The government of St. Maarten has taken note of the reports issued by the Meteorological Department of St. Maarten informing the public of a strong Atlantic high-pressure ridge in our area. This high-pressure ridge will account for intense gusty winds and hazardous sea conditions at least through the weekend. While this is not a hurricane or a tropical storm, the public is asked to pay keen attention and plan accordingly.
The report further explained that pockets of moisture being transported across the region by the brisk wind flow will produce brief passing showers. These we have already started to experience since the evening of December 30th into today, Thursday December 31st and is expected to continue through the weekend. Winds are expected to increase which will further deteriorate sea conditions today. Wave heights up to 12 feet are likely today. The Met Office warns that these hazardous conditions will cause rough seas will occur more to the North and Northeast coast of the island. Beach erosion will also be of concern, particularly along the eastern and northern shores of the island.
Consequently, the Met Office forecast further emphasized that there is a Small Craft Warning in place for St. Maarten until further notice. Small craft operators should exercise extreme caution to guard against loss of life and/or property damage. Sea bathers should also exercise extreme caution to avoid loss of life.
The community is asked to pay keen attention to weather updates issued by our local Meteorological Department of St. Maarten Facebook page or via www.meteosxm.com throughout the week and weekend and plan movements accordingly. While the forecasted weather is no hurricane or tropical storm, the strong gusts will negatively impact small craft and sea bathers and as such they are strongly advised to exercise caution and be safe.