Near 3 dozen Vincentians refusing to leave 'red zone'
ST Vincent and the Grenadines' minister of transport, works, lands and physical planning Montgomery Daniel has said nearly three dozen Vincentians are still refusing to evacuate the "red zone" near the La Soufriere volcano.
The volcano erupted three times on Friday and activity has been increasing. An evacuation order was issued on Thursday for those in the “red zone” in the northern part of the island.
Vincentian reporters told Newsday last week that some people refused to leave the areas.
This was confirmed by both Daniel and the country's prime minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves during a virtual media conference on Monday morning.
Daniel said when he visited Sandy Bay over the weekend, he saw people walking the street as if it was life as usual within the red zone.
He said many roofs have collapsed and sheds are completely destroyed. He added, "The ashfall in some areas would have been so deep that all of the vegetation would have been covered.
"There's not a single blade (of a crop) outside on some of these farms...There is not going to be very much food in that area for some time."
Gonsalves said between Monday evening and Tuesday, a decision will be made on whether to officially end the evacuation services of minibuses and other transport.
He said, "People seem to want to stay home, but they had that option. So if they don’t want to take up that option, fine."
The country's chief medical officer Dr Simone Keizer-Beache said there have been no confirmed covid19 cases at any of the 100-plus shelters thus far. She said rapid antigen testing is being done and people are also being vaccinated.
Over 12,000 people in St Vincent have been vaccinated against the virus to date.
"Near 3 dozen Vincentians refusing to leave ‘red zone’"