Sunday, February 18, 2018

Hurricane couple's long road home

...they escaped off St Maarten on a cruise ship

Home by weekend: Charlotte Ramnath and Tim Nage

STRANDED Trinidadian couple Charlotte Ramnath and Tim Nagee remain on a cruise liner in their journey home from hurricane-devastated St Maarten.

Ramnath said on Wednesday that they should be in Trinidad by the end of the week.

“Guys, we apologize for late responses, the last few days has been extremely chaotic and overwhelming. We are liaising with crew and immigration for all possible docking points for us to return home. We should be there by week's end and will update as soon as we arrive. Thus far the crew and staff has been amazingly supportive and understanding, we have met Trinidadian crew members aboard who have gone above and beyond to assist us”, Ramnath wrote in a What's App message.

On Sunday, 12 Trnibagonians and some Caricom nationals were airlifted off St Maarten by officials of the Trinidad and Tobago's National Helicopter Services.

They were taken safely to Antigua.

Government said it fulfilled its promise of committing two helicopters to assist Antigua and its devastated sister isle, and have also transported between 1,200 and 1,500 pounds of supplies to those islands.

Last week, the couple contacted the Express and took to social media to highlight their plight after Category Five Hurricane Irma struck and ravaged 95 per cent of the island.

After the storm cleared, residents began looting stores although many of their homes were flattened by the destructive 185 miles per hour winds.

And three days later, the couple again hunkered down in a hurricane shelter with the passage of Category Four Hurricane Jose.

On Monday, having had no contact with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ramnath and Nagee boarded the cruise ship which docked to assist in the evacuation of people off the island where several were killed, or left homeless in the wake of vastly damaged houses, no electricity and little water supplies.

The island's jail was also reportedly destroyed and its 250 inmates remained at large, while rampant looting occurred in the streets.