Hurricane season is here be prepared!

Although hurricane forecasting is more accurate due to technology, it does not mean that it is precise every time. Hurricanes warning should be taken seriously as the damages from lashing winds, torrential rains, and inundating storms surges may put one in danger. Know how to protect yourself in these types of emergencies.


Hurricanes are storms which have torrential rains and sustained winds. Hurricanes normally blow in a counter clockwise direction around the center eye.

Terms to Know

Hurricane Watch: Hurricanes can occur with less then 36 hours warning.

Hurricane Warning: A hurricane is expected within 24 hours in either case, the media will be advising residents and visitors on the path of the hurricane and potential evacuation measures. Local radio or television forecasts are great sources of information for the impending storm.

They are classified according to their wind speeds, central pressure and damage potential.

Categories of Hurricane

Category One Winds 119-153 KPH
Category Two Winds 154-177 KPH
Category Three Winds 178-209 KPH
Category Four Winds 210-249 KPH
Category Five Winds > 249 KPH

Threatening Hurricane

In case of a category 3, 4 or 5 hurricanes making a land fall in St Lucia, students are requested to stay home, to ensure the safety of the student.

  • Furniture of objects should be brought inside in order to avoid them becoming potential items of projectiles during the storm.
  • Utilities should also be turned off if not needed
  • An overnight bag should be made up of essential items such as: personal hygiene items, a change of clothes, a flashlight, extra batteries, medication and bottled water.
  • Driving, walking, swimming or going to the beach should be avoided during the of a hurricane warning. Please find a safe place to stay until the storm passes.

Emergency Shelters in Vieux Fort:

  • Victory Pentecostal Church on St. Jude’s Highway
  • Vieux Fort (VF) Seventh Day Adventist Church on New Dock Road
  • VF Comprehensive Campus “A”
  • VF Comprehensive Campus “B”
  • VF Special Education Center
  • VF Senior Primary School – Beanefield

For more information on hurricanes:
Office of Disaster Preparedness: 452-3802


If you are inside a building, then stop what you are doing and head for the nearest fire exit. At IAU there are two exits: one is the door we use everyday to come into the school and the other door is at the back of the school in the hallway right before the restrooms.

IAU-COM’s campus is equipt and prepared in the case of a fire, there are 7 fire extinguishers located within the university.

Remember, safety first, make sure doors are cold before you open them and to crawl underneath smoke until you get to your exit. Walk fast but do not run or panic while exiting the facility.


If the ground is shaking, you’re probably experiencing an earthquake! There are many earthquakes that occur in St. Lucia and most we don’t even realize until the next day.

Here are some tips for what to do during an earthquake:

  • If you’re indoors, duck and move under a table or even a door way. Make sure to stay away from window or heavy furniture that might fall over.
  • If you’re outside, move to an open area away from buildings and power lines.
  • If you’re driving, stop the car if it’s safe and just stay inside. Make sure to stay away from bridges, tunnels, trees, light posts, signs and power lines.
  • If you’re at the beach, move to a higher ground, going inland.

Safety Tips

Before a warning is issued:

  • If you live in Coastal areas identify a safe shelter and a route to get out of there.
  • Stock up on emergency supplies including food, water, protective clothing, medications, batteries, flashlights, road maps, and a full tank of gasoline.
  • Secure importance documents

As a storm unfolds

  • Listen to local authorities on the radio or television.
  • Be sure to shut off unnecessary utilities.
  • Remove objects that might become projectiles.
  • Store all dangerous chemicals in a safe place
  • Remain in safe area until warning expires or until local emergency personnel have issued an all – clear signal.
  • In the case of a storm, get inside a secure location and stay away from windows.
  • Remember that a lull often signifies the storm’s eye not its end. You should wait for authorities to announce that the danger has passed.