Fri | Oct 23, 2020

Young people were skeptical of Matthew making landfall

Published:Friday | October 7, 2016 | 12:00 AMOkoye Henry

Many young people living in western Jamaica were seemingly unconcerned about preparing for the approach of Hurricane Matthew last week compared to their older counterparts.

Western Focus spoke to several young adults, many of whom were in their early 20s, and found that some of them were sceptical from the outset as to whether the Category Four hurricane would have hit the island.

Darien-Andros Parkinson, who lives in St James, said he was very sceptical that the hurricane would have made landfall.

"Over the years, we have heard about a lot of hurricanes coming to Jamaica, and none of them have actually reached Jamaica or affected the island in any possible way," said Parkinson.

"Yes, I got a few candles, and so forth, but I didn't go the extreme of getting a lot of stuff because it was just one of those news where the hurricane is going to pass us by," he added.

In fact, Parkinson said he had hoped the hurricane would have come to Jamaica so he could get his first experience.

Another youngster, Jevarne Beckford, who resides in Hanover, echoed a similar tune. According to him, he made no preparations whatsoever as he did not feel threatened. He said he was sceptical of media reports that Hurricane Matthew was going to hit Jamaica because there were no changes in the climatic conditions in the parish.




"The only concern I had was for those spending money unnecessarily about a storm they said was imminent but one that I knew would never come," Beckford said.

It was a different story in the case of Raquel Reid, another resident of Hanover. Reid said she stocked up on food items and secured her documents.

"I also could not do without my electricity for so long, but I am always prepared, and once I had the necessary items in my house, I was ok," she said.

Over in neighbouring Westmoreland, Le-Vaughn Roper said while he had his doubts, he still ensured that he was prepared.

"There was the possibility of everything, and you don't know what will happen, so I said I better be safe than sorry," said Roper, who added that he stocked up mainly on water.