As Barbados continues its preparations for the 2023 Atlantic Hurricane Season, members of the public are urged to take note of the hurricane shelters nearest to them.
A total of 18 public Category One shelters and 12 privately owned ones have been approved. These shelters may be used during a hurricane or other emergency event.
Meanwhile, 43 public Category Two shelters and 16 that are privately owned are approved to be used. Category Two shelters may be used after a hurricane or other emergency event.
There are also 22 Category One emergency shelters with wheelchair access.
Persons are reminded that seeking refuge in an emergency shelter should be a last resort and should only be undertaken after official notification has been given that they are open.
Weapons, alcoholic beverages, abusive language, cigarette or cigar smoking, narcotics and pets are not allowed in emergency shelters.
Persons seeking refuge in emergency shelters are responsible for the storage of their valuable or important documents.
The wearing of face masks or fabric face covering and hand sanitisation by persons in emergency shelters is optional. However, persons with new onset respiratory symptoms must wear a face mask.
Additionally, anyone diagnosed with COVID-19 but was isolating at home will be required to declare this upon entry into the shelter. They must also wear a face mask and isolate in a designated area at the shelter.
However, residents are advised that their first option should be to seek shelter at home or with friends or family.