Preparation for Tropical Storm/Hurricane Ernesto in Belize: Lots of Announcements, Boards Going Up, Liquor Sales Ban and Curfew in Place

I took a walk into town this morning to see how people are preparing for Tropical Storm Ernesto.  The town is are definitely breathing a tiny bit more easily…the direct hit that was projected yesterday morning has shifted.  The eye of the storm is now set to hit near Mahahual, Mexico.  That is still not far from us!  It is definitely not a time to be sitting back and relaxing.  In fact, many are boarding up now and almost all of the boats on the front side of the island have moved (either south or to the back side of the island.)

The sky and sea actually look beautiful.

NEMO, our emergency boards here in San Pedro and Belize, have met this morning already.  Here are the announcements from the meeting.  (Typing it as a giant run-on sentence.)

There is no free water taxi service (that is only for Category 2+ storms)…there IS a free bus service from Belize City to Belmopan (inland)…polyclinic and pharmacies close at noon…all bars/liquor sales are to be closed at noon today…10pm curfew for tonight.  The Mexican port at Chetumal is currently closed.  It is not mandatory to go to work today.  Keep in contact with your employer about the situation.  At 2pm, the evacuation shelters on the island will open:  Shalom Living Word Church and San Pedro High School.

The double red flags are flying for the Hurricane Warning.  I’ve only seen them a few times since I’ve lived in San Pedro.

After 2 red flags, we wait for the “all clear”.

The next meeting’s results will be aired on Reef TV and Reef Radio at 1pm Belize Time.   REEF TV is currently being broadcast on the internet for all of you abroad who would like to tune in.  Check it out here:  .

The weather forecast for San Pedro:  Significant increase in wind at 8pm here in San Pedro and intermittent rain throughout the day.

Other announcements:  Super Buys and Caye Supplies will close at noon today.  The banks are closed currently or closing this morning.

Curious to see how this giant sign next to BC’s Bar weathers some solid winds.

Wishful thinking…this is a “before” picture of the Town Clock.  I would just hate for the jumbotrons to malfunction.

The deck of Caprice Restaurant at Holiday Hotel has been emptied…

Other buildings that face the sea are boarding up too…


Docks have been emptied.

Here is Woody’s Wharf…usually the home to 5-10 boats.

And TMM Sailboat Charters.  All of the sailboats have moved south to Placencia.

The jet skis have moved from their old float…

To their new home at the X Lounge…

The 9am update (Belize time) still shows the storm hitting (directly) north of us.  San Pedro town is out of the “cone” but the most northern part of the island is still there.  So KEEP WATCHING!

He still looks kinda ugly and will definitely be getting LOTS of rain.  Here is the warning from the NHC:


A storm surge of 1-4 feet is also expected.  High tide is at 1.35am Wednesday as the storm pushes through.

That’s serious rainfall.  And always an issue on an island that is barely above sea level…and in some places below it.

I apologize for such a scattered post but information keeps coming…and best to get it out quickly, right?  Stay safe everyone!

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  • Great post! Thanks for all the photo updates from town. Since we did all our shopping yesterday, we would have missed all this if not for your blog. Good community service. SO glad Ernesto has moved a bit north, but we’re still staying vigilant!

  • Are the tourists evacuating? bet the liquor stores are doing big business..Stay safe…:)

  • The shift to the north is DEFINITELY better news for AC since you will be to the southern side of the storm which turns counterclockwise. The storm surge and rains will be greater up the coast.

  • Latest radar loops show it drifting in a north westerly direction. Now I’m praying for my beloved beaches of Tulum.

  • Latest recon data shows Ernesto max surface winds at 80.7. Should be declared a Cat 1 soon.

  • Not sure if the Scoop has power or internet still but here is the latest projection.

  • Me

    I’m praying for Tulum too! I am planning on being there in about a week. We are getting lucky indeed. Good luck everyone!

    And there really isn’t much evacuating going on at all…a few cancelled trips here but most that are already here are hanging tight!