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Rough seas hit Tobago: beaches closed

By Gyasi Gonzales

THE Meteorological Services advised yesterday that all beaches from Charlotteville to Crown Point be closed until further notice following severe rough sea activity affecting the north and west coast of Tobago.
This was after several fishing boats and pleasure crafts were smashed against the rocks at Mt Irvine in rough seas that began pounding the Tobago coast early yesterday morning.
The Express spoke to Fitz Herbert-Taylor, Tobago Organisation of the People candidate for Parlatuvier/L’Anse Fourmi/Speyside about the sudden natural phenomenon.
He confirmed that several fishing boats and even a yacht at Mt Irvine had been thrown like toys against the rocks, leaving bewildered owners clueless about how they were going to move their boats off the beach.
In Parlatuvier, one fishing pirogue reportedly sank but was later re-floated amid much effort.
According to the Met Services, the almost three-metre high waves were caused by a large front system off the North American continent that is currently heading east across the Atlantic. An official at the Met Office, said that sometimes these systems can cause swells that are projected downwards, to the south, hence its effect on Tobago's north and west coast.
The Office of Disaster Preparedness and Management (ODPM) said it has since teamed up with the Tobago Emergency Management Authority (TEMA) in advising small craft operators, marine personel and sea bathers to exercise extreme caution in any sea-related activities.
While fishermen and swimmers took shelter, the swell attracted the surfers to Mt Irvine Sunday and yesterday and they will be there this week as long as the surf is up.
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