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U.S. Agencies ‘Handover’ disaster response equipment

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#NASSAU, The Bahamas – Officials of the United States Embassy, Nassau, and the United States Northern Command (USNORTHCOM), presented counterparts at The Bahamas’ Ministry of Disaster Risk Management and its agencies with several critical pieces of disaster response equipment in a move that is expected to further boost the nation’s capability to better respond to natural disasters.

The Handover, which took place on the grounds of the National Emergency Management Agency’s (NEMA) Compound, Gladstone Road and NEMA Way, is in line with the Davis Administration’s year-round focus on mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery.

The equipment consisted of a water truck, septic truck, two trailers, two forklifts, and hydro tail, valued at approximately $1.05M and is a continuation of the longstanding partnership between The Bahamas and the United States Government and its agencies such as the US Embassy, Nassau, and USNORTHCOM.

The value of the equipment goes beyond its dollar amount. The availability of a septic truck, for example, is immeasurable in the aftermath of a Tropical Storm or Hurricane, as heavy rainfall and storm surge associated with the two events have the potential to cause significant issues for septic (sewage) systems — particularly in low lying, coastal and flood-prone areas associated with The Bahamas – and by extension can cause environmental and public health issues: Compromised septic/sewage systems can lead to contamination which can then lead to disease transmission.

Forklifts, on the other hand, have become a major player in the relief and recovery efforts following a natural disaster as they have the ability to speed up the removal large amounts of debris from impacted areas in a shorter space of time, while also improving delivery times of critical emergency supplies through the loading and off-loading process. The versatility of forklifts in the aftermath of a natural disaster have made them an invaluable tool in the response and recovery efforts.

The U.S. Handover contingent was led by Mrs. Usha Pitts, Charge d’Affaires, U.S. Embassy, Nassau; and Major General Constance L. Jenkins, the Director of Logistics and Engineering, J4, Headquarters, North American Aerospace Defense Command and United States Northern Command, Peterson Space Force Base, Colorado.  Major General Jenkins is responsible for integrating, collaborating, and executing strategic logistics capabilities to provide viable solutions to homeland defense, theater security cooperation, and providing rapid/flexible response to civil authorities. They were joined by other Embassy/USNORTHCOM/US Government officials.

Minister of State in the Office of the Prime Minister with responsibility for the Ministry of Disaster Risk Management, the Hon. Leon Lundy, led the Bahamian delegation. He was accompanied by Dr. Marcellus Taylor, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Disaster Risk Management; Captain Stephen Russell, Director, National Emergency Management Agency; Mrs. Gayle Outten-Moncur, Deputy-Director, National Emergency Management Agency and officials of the Disaster Reconstruction Authority, the National Emergency Management Agency, and the Disaster Management Unit.

Officials said the Handover further highlights the strength of the U.S.-Bahamas relationship and reinforces the United States’ commitment to “our Bahamian neighbours, who are key partners in responding to disasters.”

(BIS Photos/Patrick Hanna)

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Caribbean News

PAHO Calls Americas to Increase Aedes aegypti Mosquito Control

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Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer

 

#PAHO#Dengue#Americas, February 23rd, 2024 – With nearly seven thousand cases of dengue and 102 deaths reported in the Americas as of early February 2024, the Pan American Health Organization is once again calling for stronger measures to control the Aedes aegypti mosquito, the main transmitter of dengue. These numbers indicate a 157 percent increase in cases over the same period in 2023.  In the first five weeks of 2024, Peru, Martinique, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Costa Rica, French Guiana, Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay reported an increase in cases.

 

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Caribbean News

Dark Tourism Efforts in Jamaica – Colonial sites Preservation

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Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer

#DarkTourism#Jamaica,February 23rd, 2024 – British Colonial sites in Jamaica like Georgian plantation houses and slave infrastructure, are being preserved as slavery monuments to boost what authorities are calling the “Dark Tourism” industry. According to reports, Dark Tourism refers to tourists visiting places marked by historical tragedy. For Jamaica, the history of Britain’s 300-year rule will be explained at the preserved sites. Tourism minister Edmund Bartlett says work is being done with the ministry of Culture and the Jamaica National Heritage Trust.

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Bahamas News

Bahamas as Caribbean top 2024 Spring Destination

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Rashaed Esson

Staff Writer

#Bahamas#Tourism, February 23rd, 2024 – The Bahamas has been categorized as the most popular Caribbean destination for travel in the upcoming spring season by travel insurance company Squaremouth, in a new report. It was the only Caribbean nation to make the list for the top 10 destinations. The report is derived from travel insurance purchases made through Squaremouth.

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