Officials continue to urge residents to evacuate
GRAND BAHAMA, BAHAMAS (6 p.m. Saturday) — As of yesterday afternoon more than 1,200 residents in East Grand Bahama heeded the evacuation order and sought shelter further inland, according to East Grand Bahama Administrator Gay Antoine-Bowe.
Speaking to Eyewitness News Online around 6 p.m., Atoine-Bowe said while officials were encouraging residents to evacuate, approximately 260 people remained in the district.
“So, at this time we are still encouraging persons to evacuate,” she said around 6 p.m.
Bowe said as long as the weather permits, her would transport people out of East Grand Bahama.
Freeport Weather Office Chief Meteorologist Shavonne Moxey made a similar appeal to Grand Bahamians, especially those in the East Grand Bahama to evacuate, noting that Hurricane Dorian, a “dangerous and powerful” Category 5 storm was approaching the island with over 160 mile-per-hour winds.
“Please evacuate or seek higher ground,” she advised.
“Dorian is coming with a lot of storm surge, a lot of rainfall and very strong damaging winds.
“And so, we are asking everyone in the eastern area of Grand Bahama to move inland if you can.”
Moxey noted that while an official order is left to the discretion of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), based on Dorian’s expected path and sheer power, she believes it is in East Grand Bahama residents’ best interest to evacuate.
“At this time, since tropical force winds are closing in, the time to be able to move is going to be diminishing,” Moxey said.
“So, if you can move and if you are not sure how your structure or your dwelling is then get out as soon as you can.”