Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 3rd 2015 Contents A6
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Saturday, Januuary 3, 2015
Stay out of the water.
This was the warning
from Chief Meteorologist
Shakeer Baig yesterday, as
the T&T Meteorological
Service continues its
rough seas bulletin into
Baig issued the warning
in anticipation of crowds
at popular North Coast
beaches this weekend,
since normally thousands
flock to the seaside for a
last lap cooler before
schools reopen on Mon-
Baig is urging all beach-
goers and those involved
in marine activities to
exercise caution if they
choose to head to the
beaches. He said rough
seas continued to pound
the North coast and were
producing huge waves.
"We are advising peo-
ple who are actually going
to the beach for fun to try
and stay out of the water
because these waves are
very high, sometimes they
are in excess of ten feet,
which is three metres," he
Baig said if a bather
came into contact with
those high waves they
would be pulled into the
ocean and might
encounter strong currents.
"Even (good) swimmers
sometimes have difficul-
ties getting out of these
things and when we have
instances like these we
have rip tides/rip currents
which are the types of
currents that can drag you
into the ocean or take you
from one area to another.
If you know you are going
to the beach, stay out of
the water," Baig warned.
He said the Met Office
was maintaining the rough
seas bulletin and was
advising everyone who
would be going to the
beach and residents along
the coastline "to exercise
all caution and stay away
from the water, if they
Met office: Stay
out of the water
The bulletin remained
in effect, Baig said, since
ground reports from the
North Coast and other
exposed coastlines indi-
cated that the seas were
still very rough.
Baig made a special plea
to surfers, who enjoy
rough seas because of the
large waves, to exercise
due care and follow
instructions from life-
guards on duty.
Some 18 families have suffered a total of
$500,000 in losses as their boats have been either
damaged or destroyed by the rough seas.
General secretary of Fishermen and Friends of
the Sea, Gary Aboud, said the rough seas had been
devastating for Las Cuevas fisherfolk.
He is calling on Government to help the fisherfolk
on humanitarian grounds.
"Fishermen cannot obtain insurance on their
vessels, engines and nets. We have lobbied for
insurance and no government has done anything to
help or support us. Our members are without
insurance... How many business people have been
operating without insurance?" Aboud contended.
He said fisherfolk had never encountered such
water before along the north coast, which exceeded
storm surges. He said boats and engines had sunk
since the rough seas began.
Aboud said the rough seas did not augur well for
2015, especially since the fisherfolk already had to
contend with oil spill pollution, declining fishing
stock and seismic testing around the island.
FISHERMEN: ROUGH SEAS
A BAD START TO 2015
On December 27, the Met office issued its first
rough seas bulletin. Baig explained that a low
pressure system in the Atlantic Ocean led to
disturbed seas to the north of T&T and northerly
swells. Following that, he said, a sub-tropical high
pressure system started to establish itself where
the low system was in the Central Atlantic system
and produced very strong easterly and north
eastern winds that ontributed to the rough seas.
This, he said, was not unusual for this time of the
year because the existence of the sub-tropical high
pressure system heralded the start of the dry
While he did not announce the official start of
the dry season, Baig said T&T had been
experiencing lots of strong surface winds from the
high pressure system, which were producing rough
seas and high waves.
Friends enjoy themselves on a paddle boat at the recently opened phase of the Chaguaramas Boardwalk
on Thursday. PHOTO: JEFF MAYERS
The Meteorological Service says it
expects sea conditions along the
exposed coasts to continue to be
moderate to rough.
Wave heights are 2.5 to 3.0 metres
along the exposed coastlines. This is
attributed to relatively strong winds
in the lower levels of thermosphere.
These strong winds are currently
agitating surfaces of the Atlantic
Ocean and Caribbean Sea.
It said Numerical Weather
Prediction (NAP) models forecast
similar conditions for at least the next
24 to 48 hours with wave heights in
open waters reaching 2.5 to 3.0
metres near-shore for both islands
but occasionally reaching in excess of
3.0 metres offshore for the northeast
exposed coasts. As such rough seas
Seas in open waters will continue to
be affected for at least the next 24 to
48 hours. Although wave heights in
sheltered areas are below 1.0 metre,
seas can become choppy at times.
Additionally, conditions may become
aggravated during high tides."
The release said rough seas may
lead to dangerous marine conditions,
which will include localised disruption
to sea bathing and sea travel by small
crafts, as well as fishing boats. Fisher-
folks and those living along the coast
are warned of the possible occurrence
of big waves associated with the
Citizens, especially those residing
along coastal areas are advised to be
on the alert for above normal sea
conditions. All necessary measures
must be taken to preserve life and
property. Small craft operators, sea
bathers and all other marine interests
are asked to exercise extreme caution
in any sea activities.
Congratulations to L Rameshwar,
winner of the Wednesday, December
31, 2014 prize.
The number drawn on Crime
Watch on Friday, January 2, 2015, was
324361. If the trolley on the back of
your Thursday or Friday s Guardian
has that number you win the prize of
$1,000 cash and $1,000 in grocery
You have until 3pm, Monday, to
come to the Guardian office, 22-24
St Vincent Street, Port-of-Spain, with
the newspaper containing the winning
number and your photo identification.
Remember to keep your Saturday,
Sunday and Monday papers for the
mega draw on Monday.
If the number drawn matches the
trolley on the back of any of those
papers, you win Monday s prize of
cash and grocery vouchers.
Jolly Trolley Promotion
prize now worth $2,000
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