‘NMI more prepared today’

Torres more concerned for those still in tents

Gov. Ralph DLG Torres said the government is more prepared today in the event another strong typhoon hits the CNMI this typhoon season.

His concern, however, Torres said, is more focused on those people who are still living in tents or those who still have pending home repairs with the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

“We’ve been through this before,” said the governor in a radio news briefing last week, when asked if the CNMI is prepared in case there of another devastating typhoon this year.


Torres said he, special assistant for Homeland Security and Emergency Management Gerald Guerrero, special assistant in the Office of Management and Budget Vicky Villagomez, Governor’s Authorized Representative Patrick Guerrero, and others “have been down this road.”

“So, in terms of being prepared, I believe that we are more prepared today than we were ever,” Torres said.

The governor said they continue to work with FEMA on how to expedite the process for those who are still in tents and are still waiting for FEMA’s assistance. “There’s so many different challenges. And that is my concern: those folks that are still in…tents,” he said.

So far, no typhoon has hit the CNMI this year.

According to the U.S. National Weather Service Forecast Office Guam, typhoons can occur throughout the year in the Marianas region, but tropical depressions usually form between July and November.

The National Weather Service’s forecast for this year is one to three tropical depressions or tropical storms, followed by two or three typhoons between mid-July and November.

In 2019, there were several near-misses, but there were no direct hits in the CNMI and Guam.

In 2019, Super Typhoon Hagibis passed just north of Saipan.

Super typhoons Soudelor and Yutu caused massive destruction on Saipan and Tinian in 2015 and 2018, respectively.

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a senior reporter of Saipan Tribune. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and has covered all news beats in the CNMI. He is a recipient of the CNMI Supreme Court Justice Award. Contact him at ferdie_delatorre@Saipantribune.com
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