The Meteorological Service of Jamaica has lifted the Tropical Storm Warning for Jamaica, as Hurricane Tomas moves further away from the island.
In addition, the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM) has given the all clear for non-essential workers to resume duties today.
The Met Service has advised that Jamaica is now outside of the range of tropical storm force winds associated with the hurricane and, therefore, the threat of such conditions no longer exists.
At 10 a.m. Friday, Hurricane Tomas was 150 miles northeast of Morant Point and 160 miles west northwest of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. It is expected to continue moving away from Jamaica and pass over sections of Haiti and Cuba by this afternoon.
However, the Met Service is advising small craft operators to continue to exercise caution until wind and sea levels return to safe levels.
The island had been under Tropical Storm Warning since Thursday (Nov.4) with approximately 189 persons seeking refuge at 20 shelters, including the National Arena in Kingston, acting on Government’s advice for Jamaicans to take the threat of the weather system seriously, and to seek safe housing. Forty of those in shelters were children.
Schools in the eastern section of the island, primarily in St. Thomas, Portland, St. Mary and Kingston and St. Andrew, were ordered closed, while non-essential workers were advised to stay home.
However, Tomas passed east of Jamaica this morning (November 5), sparing the island the projected strong winds and heavy rainfall.
The ODPEM is yet to receive any reports of damage and the National Arena in Kingston is now closed and shelterees transferred to Edith Dalton James High School.
The ODPEM said all agencies including the Health Ministry, the police, the National Works Agency and the Labour and Social Security Ministry are still on standby should their services be needed.