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There was Hurricane Gonzalo


gtaylor
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Hurricane Gonzalo hit St. Maarten pretty hard last night, Monday October 13th. The Airport and Cruise Facility were closed with many flights and ships diverted to alternate destinations.

 

The following information is clipped from various Government sources and personal friends on the island. The local newspaper that I subscribe to is not yet back on-line.

 

Clean-up is well under way by the Ministry VROMI and private contractors who are assisting with the national clean-up.*

 

Primary focus is Front Street, Back Street and the main roads. Primary roads should be clear within another 24 hours; secondary roads, complete clean-up could take up to 14 days.

 

Motorists/sightseers should stay off the roads to allow clean-up crews to move around quickly in clearing debris and other obstructions; this would also allow various crews from utility services to restore electricity/telecoms;

 

Police and the Military will be assisting Ministry VROMI clean-up and certain streets and roads will be closed temporarily to facilitate quick clean-up;

 

Port St. Maarten is busy with clean-up operations; divers have to go into the water to assess the situation to see if there are any undersea obstructions that could inhibit the safe docking of vessels; the port will resume operations as soon as the all clear sign has been given;

 

GEBE has several teams working to restore electricity.will be removed as well as any live cables;

 

*Link 1 Cay Hill Area: Remains closed until further notice as a precautionary measure due to rock falls;

Cleaning of debris continues on the road leading to Dawn Beach and Westin Resort;

…...................................

just heard from my friend Joyce Prince.*

 

This is from her e-mail.*

Lots of damage to the island. The airport is closed. No cruise ships.*

 

I received minor damages. Lost most of my vegetation but i am un hurt and alive.*

 

No water , telphone, electricity, i am at a friends house sending emails.*

 

We were not properly informed about the storm. Great Bay hotel lost almost the entire roof of the top floor*

….....................

and from my friend Barbara

 

oh boy. It is true. we were not properly informed. first of all NHC had it wrong. Then our local MET office lost all communication. It was a mess.*

and some reports have the island receiving 200 km ( 124 m) wind gusts but NHC only had it at a CAT 1 storm. I can tell you that around my house we definitely had over 100 mile wind gusts for hours. Gonzalo was way stronger than a CAT 1.*

 

The airport is open now and the island is slowly recovering.*

major clean up efforts under way.*

 

Unfortunately one man died on his boat in the lagoon.

 

......................................

 

Expect any cruise visits to St. Maarten and local excursions to be disrupted for a while.

 

gary

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Hurricane Gonzalo hit St. Maarten pretty hard last night, Monday October 13th. The Airport and Cruise Facility were closed with many flights and ships diverted to alternate destinations.

 

The following information is clipped from various Government sources and personal friends on the island. The local newspaper that I subscribe to is not yet back on-line.

 

Clean-up is well under way by the Ministry VROMI and private contractors who are assisting with the national clean-up.*

 

Primary focus is Front Street, Back Street and the main roads. Primary roads should be clear within another 24 hours; secondary roads, complete clean-up could take up to 14 days.

 

Motorists/sightseers should stay off the roads to allow clean-up crews to move around quickly in clearing debris and other obstructions; this would also allow various crews from utility services to restore electricity/telecoms;

 

Police and the Military will be assisting Ministry VROMI clean-up and certain streets and roads will be closed temporarily to facilitate quick clean-up;

 

Port St. Maarten is busy with clean-up operations; divers have to go into the water to assess the situation to see if there are any undersea obstructions that could inhibit the safe docking of vessels; the port will resume operations as soon as the all clear sign has been given;

 

GEBE has several teams working to restore electricity.will be removed as well as any live cables;

 

*Link 1 Cay Hill Area: Remains closed until further notice as a precautionary measure due to rock falls;

Cleaning of debris continues on the road leading to Dawn Beach and Westin Resort;

…...................................

just heard from my friend Joyce Prince.*

 

This is from her e-mail.*

Lots of damage to the island. The airport is closed. No cruise ships.*

 

I received minor damages. Lost most of my vegetation but i am un hurt and alive.*

 

No water , telphone, electricity, i am at a friends house sending emails.*

 

We were not properly informed about the storm. Great Bay hotel lost almost the entire roof of the top floor*

….....................

and from my friend Barbara

 

oh boy. It is true. we were not properly informed. first of all NHC had it wrong. Then our local MET office lost all communication. It was a mess.*

and some reports have the island receiving 200 km ( 124 m) wind gusts but NHC only had it at a CAT 1 storm. I can tell you that around my house we definitely had over 100 mile wind gusts for hours. Gonzalo was way stronger than a CAT 1.*

 

The airport is open now and the island is slowly recovering.*

major clean up efforts under way.*

 

Unfortunately one man died on his boat in the lagoon.

 

......................................

 

Expect any cruise visits to St. Maarten and local excursions to be disrupted for a while.

 

gary

thanks Gary. We were scheduled to be in St. Martin in 3 weeks. So sad to hear about this.

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So sad to read the damage to St. Maarten, also read that Marigot was flooded. The storm is next headed to Bermuda, which just had Hurricane Fay there. Info below is taken from the Weather Channel.

 

The storm's biggest impacts on Tuesday were on the shared island that is home to the Dutch and French territories of St. Maarten and St. Martin. Most of the Dutch Caribbean territory was without water and electricity Tuesday, and residents reported losing roofs, doors and windows, the Daily Herald notes.

 

Amy Arrindell, vice president of the St. Maarten Zoological and Botanical Foundation, said the St. Maarten Zoo was heavily damaged and that trees were uprooted, the petting zoo was destroyed and the animals' enclosures were flooded. Thankfully, no animals were injured or hurt.

 

"There is major damage to the structure," she said. "It is total devastation."

 

The storm killed one elderly man in St. Maarten who was aboard a boat in Simpson Bay Lagoon. Twenty of the 37 boats sunk during the storm did so in Simpson Bay Lagoon, according to The Daily Herald. Two other people are missing, one man who was last seen on a boat near the French Caribbean territory or St. Martin and another man standing near a harbor in St. Barths.

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I have a question regarding this hurricane and I guess hurricanes in general since the last one I went through was Sandy in NJ. Do cruise ships usually bypass these islands that are hit pretty bad like St. Martin? I guess it depends on the amount of damage? And how soon do they let you know if they are bypassing? I am scheduled to be there 11/5 with Explorer of the Seas and was just wondering since I never experienced this before. I have been in the islands in hurricane season and have had ship go to labadee or coco cay if the island we were going to was in the track of the storm but never after the storm hit. I feel so badly for these people being without electricity and the damage.

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I have a question regarding this hurricane and I guess hurricanes in general since the last one I went through was Sandy in NJ. Do cruise ships usually bypass these islands that are hit pretty bad like St. Martin? I guess it depends on the amount of damage? And how soon do they let you know if they are bypassing? I am scheduled to be there 11/5 with Explorer of the Seas and was just wondering since I never experienced this before. I have been in the islands in hurricane season and have had ship go to labadee or coco cay if the island we were going to was in the track of the storm but never after the storm hit. I feel so badly for these people being without electricity and the damage.

Its early to tell, but I doubt you will bypass. If the current info is accurate, divers need to access the integrity of the pier and see if there are any obstructions. There is obviously a need to get electric up and running, and to clear the roads. Most storms in these areas are cleaned up within a week to ten days, that doesn't mean you won't see evidence of damage, you will.....

 

 

But they want to do everything that they can to avoid having to turn away ships, turning away ships compounds the financial problems for the residents and the economy. The cruiselines and the government will be in communications and negotiating to make sure the safety of the residents, passengers/crew and ships are all taken into account. Spend a little more on this trip, because they will need it......

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Thanks for the info. We are scheduled to stop there Nov 4th, I think, on the 2 week Explorer repo from NY to Fl.

 

I have a question regarding this hurricane and I guess hurricanes in general since the last one I went through was Sandy in NJ. Do cruise ships usually bypass these islands that are hit pretty bad like St. Martin? I guess it depends on the amount of damage? And how soon do they let you know if they are bypassing? I am scheduled to be there 11/5 with Explorer of the Seas and was just wondering since I never experienced this before. I have been in the islands in hurricane season and have had ship go to labadee or coco cay if the island we were going to was in the track of the storm but never after the storm hit. I feel so badly for these people being without electricity and the damage.

 

 

We are also on Explorer's repo arriving in St. Maarten on Nov 5 and not to concerned about missing any ports.

 

Thoughts and prayers to all in the path of the Hurricane.

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We were scheduled for a pre-cruise night on 11/8 at the Royal Sonesta Great Bay & received a call from them today saying they were heavily damaged & would not be able to accommodate us. She'll call us tomorrow "with options."

 

There are photos on line of the damage in various places on the island & it looks dreadful.

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We are also on Explorer's repo arriving in St. Maarten on Nov 5 and not to concerned about missing any ports.

 

Thoughts and prayers to all in the path of the Hurricane.

I am not concerned about missing the port. I am not that callous. I was simply asking what they normally do in situations like this since I have never experienced it.

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I am not concerned about missing the port. I am not that callous. I was simply asking what they normally do in situations like this since I have never experienced it.

 

Did not mean to offend you at all with my comment, I was just voicing my opinion. We've been cruising for 30 yrs. and normally do not cruise during hurricane season. We're happy to be on a ship, not matter were she goes and always see the glass half full.

 

Enjoy your cruise :)

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We were scheduled for a pre-cruise night on 11/8 at the Royal Sonesta Great Bay & received a call from them today saying they were heavily damaged & would not be able to accommodate us. She'll call us tomorrow "with options."

 

There are photos on line of the damage in various places on the island & it looks dreadful.

This is the hotel I referred to in the original post in this thread.

 

They lost much of their roof during the hurricane.

 

The local paper reports that they reassigned guests to their sister-hotel Sonesta Maho Beach Resort and Casino, as well as the Radisson Blue Resort Marina and Spa on the French side and The Towers at Mullet Bay.

 

By the way, 'tomorrow' may be different when measured in island time.

 

gary

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I am very rattled after just seeing over 100 pictures of our beloved St. Maarten/St. Martin post storm. Wow, after seeing those pictures I am very happily surprised that there were not more casualties. To all those on the island my heart goes out to you. To all those going, I hope that you book an excursion, visit a restaurant or book a tour.

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How heart breaking. I was on my first cruise in the 90's and we stopped there right after a massive hurricane hit. We were the first ship. We had to be tendered because the dock was destroyed We got off the ship and my heart was shattered. The devastation back then ( can't remember hurricane name ) was too much for me. After that. I vowed to go back and see the island and all its glory because I did not want the sad images in my head. I have since been there 2 x and will be there again in April. I hope and pray it's not as bad as it was in the 90's and they can recover quickly. Prayers to all affected.

 

 

Jamie

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I also recall back in the 90's when I think it was Hurricane Luis that hit St. Maarten and other islands in the Caribbean and caused catastrophic damage. You can still see some remnants left behind from that hurricane in St. Maarten, my heart aches for these people, they are in my thoughts and prayers.

 

 

http://www.thedailyherald.com/index.php?option=com_content&id=50794:gonzalo-wreaks-havoc-in-st-maarten&Itemid=54

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Thank you gtaylor...We were contacted by Sonesta Great Bay & told a rep from Sonesta Maho would be in touch but we've not heard from them... I suspect they are overwhelmed with calls. We're there just one night where others have a vacation planned for many days. Meanwhile we booked the Westin at Dawn Beach. The Starwood rep said they had no damage. It's farther from the port but looks very nice. I'm wondering about the ship's pier? Anyone heard anything about damage there? We've not heard anything from Seabourn so I assume all is on track... The last thing St. M.'s needs is having a bunch of cruise ships cancel since all of those hotel workers will be laid off as it is.... It would be a tragedy for taxi drivers & other support people to be out of work. I think I'll take some warm weather clothing & give them to a taxi driver or hotel employee if I have any luggage room (very big IF.) I'll watch this board for the inside scoop...as usual.

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Thank you gtaylor...We were contacted by Sonesta Great Bay & told a rep from Sonesta Maho would be in touch but we've not heard from them... I suspect they are overwhelmed with calls. We're there just one night where others have a vacation planned for many days. Meanwhile we booked the Westin at Dawn Beach. The Starwood rep said they had no damage. It's farther from the port but looks very nice. I'm wondering about the ship's pier? Anyone heard anything about damage there? <snip>

The pier is fine.

 

A full assessment has been conducted, including something called side-sonar-inspection and no obstructions were found. The Carnival Valor will be the first ship to call since the hurricane, scheduled for tomorrow, Saturday, morning.

 

The Westin is a fine hotel, though we think it looks like a prison from the water, and is about 20 minutes from downtown and the Cruise Facility.

 

You might check to see if Holland House would accept a reservation for a one-night stay, as it is very nice and is located right in the heart of Philipsburg shopping and restaurants. I didn't see any report of damage to the hotel.

 

gary

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Feel so bad for the residents. We will be visiting in December and I think the various beaches/shops, etc. will be somewhat back to normal by then. However, the residents will have a harder time with the storm damage.

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Sadly, St. Maarten/ St. Martin had quite a bit of damage. :(

Any word on the locals (16, I think) reported missing?

LuLu

 

The last I read was that one gentleman who was 87 and survived Hurricane Luis on his boat drowned on his boat during Hurricane Gonzalo. His body was recovered. Hopefully the others who were missing have been located safely. Sadly this storm caught a lot of people off guard. Mother nature was not kind to St. Maarten on October 13, 2014.

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The last I read was that one gentleman who was 87 and survived Hurricane Luis on his boat drowned on his boat during Hurricane Gonzalo. His body was recovered. Hopefully the others who were missing have been located safely. Sadly this storm caught a lot of people off guard. Mother nature was not kind to St. Maarten on October 13, 2014.

 

Read that those missing have been found, thank God.

 

It's official: no fatalities in St. Barts and St. Martin, French side. All missing mariners (16) have been retrieved or rescued.

 

http://stormcarib.com/reports/current/stmartin.shtml

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The last I read was that one gentleman who was 87 and survived Hurricane Luis on his boat drowned on his boat during Hurricane Gonzalo. His body was recovered. Hopefully the others who were missing have been located safely. Sadly this storm caught a lot of people off guard. Mother nature was not kind to St. Maarten on October 13, 2014.

 

Thanks to you and ALL others for reporting back.

LuLu

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