Barbados braces for Hurricane Beryl amid hosting World Cup of Cricket tournament

Barbados Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley took to social media Friday night to urge her constituents to start preparing for stormy weather.

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados Hurricane Warnings remain in effect for the Caribbean island of Barbados, and as Hurricane Beryl approaches the region, emergency managers have had their hands full not only preparing residents for the impending storm but also flocks of travelers who have come from around the world for the T20 Men's World Cup of Cricket.

Barbados Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley took to social media Friday night to urge her constituents to start preparing for stormy weather.

"We are then more than likely going to be facing a storm and possibly a hurricane … within the next 48 hours," Mottley said during the address. "The reality is that we are not in a position to know exactly what type of weather we are going to face, but we know we’re going to face some weather. And you and I know that when these things happen it’s better to plan for the worst and pray for the best."

The latest forecasts have become more daunting. Beryl is now expected to continue to rapidly intensify as it passes just south of the island early Monday morning with peak wind gusts around 130 mph. That would place the storm at a major Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale.

The forecast cone for Hurricane Beryl.
(FOX Weather)


The island has 34 shelters designated for residents to ride out the storm if needed, and Motter suggested residents stock up on non-perishable foods and water for the stormy week ahead.  

The Barbados Department of Emergency Management has opened shelters across the island. 

Grantley Adams International Airport will close on Sunday at 7 p.m. until further notice. 

This week ‘is going to be kind of a long week’

But it’s not just her residents that need to prepare. Barbados is home to this year’s T20 Cricket World Cup, drawing tourists and cricket fans from around the world.

Luckily, most of the tournament is complete, with the final match between South Africa and India held on Saturday.

"We are hosting the Cricket World Cup Finals, and we do have a lot of people on the island," Motter said. "And while (the storm) is not expected to affect (Saturday’s) events, we do believe that we have the duty to ensure that all who are here are also in a position to prepare themselves for any eventuality."


And even after Beryl passes, another tropical disturbance may push through the Lesser Antilles around the middle of the week for renewed heavy rain.

The tropical weather outlook for the Atlantic Basin.
(FOX Weather)


"So know that (this) week is going to be kind of a long week," Motter said. "We hope that (that second system) will not raise itself to a storm, but even if it doesn’t, the inundation of water coming after what happens on Monday is likely to cause problems."

But Motter expressed confidence that if island residents can band together and help their neighbors, they’ll weather the storm.

"As fate would have it, we’re doing this while we’re hosting the world," Motter said. "But that is life and I have learned that in this job you have got to be able to walk and chew, and we will walk and chew."