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PRIME MINISTER MARLIN PROVIDES UPDATE ON INFRASTRUCTURE

POND ISLAND - Prime Minister the Honorable William Marlin of Sint Maarten releases the following briefing on the infrastructure, along with words of thanks. Please note that all was current at press time and is subject to change as work and talks progress.

ROADS

Main roads are cleared and work continues on inner roads to the districts.

ELECTRICITY / WATER

Several districts have received electricity and water thus far. Emphasis and priority is being placed in this regard also for the schools to receive the same.

TELEPHONE / INTERNET SERVICE

Major telecommunication services including TELEM and UTS is functioning, however with some sporadic service. It is recommended to download WhatsApp on your smart phone if at all possible for quick communication, as SMS is taking much longer to go through.  

TELEVISION

Cable television provider is not operational, however streaming via Internet is up and running.

RADIO

Two major radio stations are operational: PJD2 (102.7 FM) and Laser (101.1 FM).  Indications from the regulatory body, Bureau Telecommunication is that early next week other radio stations will soon be broadcasting.

SUPERMARKETS

Several grocery stores are open within the curfew, and more are opening on an ongoing basis to service the community. Please report price gauging to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

GASOLINE

Gasoline stations were allowed to be open within the curfew, providing service to emergency vehicles and the general population.  

CURFEW

The curfew between Sint Maarten and Saint Martin has been synchronized.  Authorities from both governments have agreed that effective Sunday, September 17, 2017, non-emergency pass holders are prohibited from being on the streets between 7:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. local time until further notice. Emergency pass holders are defined persons holding valid disaster team passes from Sint Maarten or Saint Martin. Though checkpoints will be at all borders, this does not prohibit the free movement between each side of the island, but it will enhance the protection of the citizens on the island and of course, provide ease of transportation for residents and family and friends during this difficult time to both sides of the island.

DROP-OFF POINTS FOR CHARITY CONTRIBUTIONS

Efforts are being made in each district of the island on a daily basis to provide food and supplies to the population.  As indicated by the Police Force of Sint Maarten, this is progressing well without incident.

FOREIGN AID

In support of coordination, USAR.NL collects requests from local disaster management and donor offerings in the Coordination Center of the Government of Sint Maarten.  In this Coordination Center, USAR.NL and local volunteers work together with government employees and communication staff.  In cooperation with the local government, priorities are set and the offer is tailored to the demand.  To provide or receive aid, persons or organizations can use the email address: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

AIRPORT

The Princess Juliana International Airport is receiving cargo flights and humanitarian flights. Commercial flights are not being authorized at this time, however we realize that many individuals do need to come to the island to assess property and see family. We will be updating on this soon.

PORT

The Port Facilities of Sint Maarten received some damage but cruise ships and cargo vessels conducting humanitarian efforts are docking at the port and assisting in taking persons to other destinations.

HOSPITAL/ MEDICAL

Sint Maarten Medical Center received damage during the storm but is operational. The Lab services (SLS) are also up and running.  General practitioners and pharmacies are open daily to the public on a rotating schedule.

WORDS OF THANKS

The government of Sint Maarten is extremely grateful for the support of the people of The Netherlands. On 15th September 2017, a total of €13,3 million was raised in The Netherlands during a day-long national event, Nederland helpt Sint Maarten telethon.

Prime Minister The Honorable William Marlin commented that he was immensely moved when he heard that Dutch children had emptied their piggy bank to be able to donate to the hurricane victims on Sint Maarten.

“It is an unprecedented outpouring of support in the face of disaster. This funding will allow us to serve our community with the reconstruction and rebuilding that our country needs”, the Prime Minister said.

“With it, we can get the people of Sint Maarten back into their homes and back to work. The support will provide essential materials, supplies and services to our community. It will aid our disaster relief efforts and support the good work of our relief organizations in helping to rebuild our nation. We are proud of their tireless dedication and work they are putting in to help those affected.”

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Man stabbed to death by 23-year old. Motive under investigation

PHILIPSBURG - Detectives are presently investigating the fatal stabbing of a man residing “Over the Bank” in Philipsburg. This incident took place on Sunday September 17th between 07.00 and 08.00 a.m.

Several police patrols, detectives and Forensic Department were on the scene to protect the crime scene, collect evidence and question potential witnesses.

The reason for this stabbing is still unclear is in being investigated. The suspect identified with initials A.R. (23) was arrested on the spot and remains in custody. The victim was pronounced dead on the scene by a medical doctor and the body of the victim was confiscated for further investigation.

More details of this investigation are unavailable at this time. When more details become available the media will be informed. (Sint Maarten Police Force)

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NV GEBE continues with distribution of water trucks to districts

PHILIPSBURG – NV GEBE continues to distribute on a daily basis water to various districts and entities throughout the country via water trucks. 

Some of the areas and entities that have been provided with water are: White and Yellow Cross; Ebenezer; Saunders; Around the area of Police Houses; Fort Willem; Safe Haven; Zagersgut Road; Coralita Road; Nazareth; Sucker Garden; Middle Region; 911 Houses; Cupecoy; Cole Bay; and many more neighbourhoods. 

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SZV OFFICE CLOSED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE

PHILIPSBURG - Social & Health Insurances SZV would like to inform its customers and the public that our offices located at the Harbour View Building are CLOSED to the public until further notice. We kindly ask persons NOT to visit our offices as we cannot assist you at the moment.

Contacting SZV is possible via the Facebook page where daily updates will be posted as well.  

The customer service phone lines are currently NOT operational. We aim to have our phone lines operational as soon as possible. We apologize for any inconvenience caused.

SZV Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/SZV.org/

ARCHIVE, September 15, 2017 PHILIPSBURG - Social & Health Insurances SZV would like to inform its customers and the public of the following important notices;

  • Our offices in Philipsburg are NOT open for the public at this time. Unfortunately, at this time we CANNOT assist you if you visit our offices. Our staff is working very hard to get the office open again as soon as possible.
  • Medical emergencies should be directed to SMMC until further notice.
  • EMPLOYERS: Payment of ZV/OV Declarations;
    • Payments of premiums can be made online to the SZV bank account. No cash payments are possible at our offices at the moment.
    • It is not possible to submit declarations online at the moment. The deadline to submit the declarations for the month of September (the 15th) has been extended until further notice.
  • Contacting SZV is possible via private Facebook Message on our Facebook page. We aim to have our local lines operational soon.
  • We are working together with our stakeholders locally and abroad to assist our customers who are pending a Medical Referral abroad at this moment. All urgent cases will be handled via the SMMC, all non-urgent cases will be re-scheduled at the earliest possible dates. Persons should not come to SZV offices regarding Medical Referrals at this time as urgent cases as we are unable to assist and these are processed via the SMMC.
  • There are no flights inbound to St. Maarten at this time. Customers who are abroad for Medical Referral will have to stay pending until it is possible to travel back to St. Maarten. Our International Agents will assist with any questions in this regard.
  • Customers who have evacuated to Curacao temporarily; we will update you via our FB page regarding the validity of your SZV card in Curacao. SZV will make contact phone numbers in Curacao available shortly and also a list of pharmacies and general practitioners you can visit during your stay. These will be the health care providers that will accept your SZV card in Curacao. Please stay pending for details.
  • Renewing your Insurance card: This will be possible once our offices in St. Maarten are open again.
  • If you have an expired card or soon to be expired card at the moment and require medical attention; Health Care providers locally have been given a list of persons who are insured and can assist you based on this. This will remain in place until further notice.
  • For general inquires or messages you can send us a message via our Facebook page.

Our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/SZV.org/

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Three suspects arrested for violating curfew

PHILIPSBURG - Since the aftermath of hurricane Irma, a 24 hours curfew was issued by the Honorable Prime Minister William Marlin for the entire Dutch side of the island. As the situation on the island started to improve the Prime Minister changed this curfew to a more lenient one.

This curfew is to allow law enforcement to provide the necessary safety and security for all citizens and to allow the clean-up services to continue with the cleaning. The present curfew is now valid from 3.00 p.m.  to 8.00 a.m. the following day.

As was decided and publicly announced by the Public Prosecutors Office in collaboration with the police department that all persons in violation of the curfew will be arrested, taken to the police station and will have to go through the legal process.

These persons will have to pay a hefty fine as conditional dismissal before being released or if another decision such as community service, is taken by the Public Prosecutors Office.

On Wednesday September 13th 3 persons have been arrested for the violations of this curfew and are presently going through the legal process.

The Sint Maarten Police Force along with the assistance of the reinforcement of all law enforcement agencies presently on the island will strictly enforce this curfew with a “Zero” tolerance policy which is in place.

The Sint Maarten Police Force is sending out a very strong message to the entire population informing them that they should stay at home and not to venture out on the streets during the curfew. This warning is to avoid any unnecessary inconveniences, delays and/or penalties. (Sint Maarten Police Force) 

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Dutch Government ready to provide Support Caribbean part of the Kingdom

SABA/ST. EUSTATIUS - Hurricane Irma will pass through the Caribbean islands of St. Eustatius, Saba and St. Maarten from Tuesday night through Wednesday afternoon. 

In connection with Kingdom relations the concerned Ministries are making preparations to support to the islands, limit damage and confront the possible consequences head on.

Almost 100 Dutch soldiers have departed Curaçao and Aruba en route to St. Maarten, St. Eustatius and Saba. In addition, two Navy ships will depart from Curaçao and Aruba in order to deliver extra soldiers and supplies after the passing of Irma. The Netherlands has offered help and support, also help with any possible damage after the passage of the hurricane.

A Weather Impact Team with representatives of the Ministries of Infrastructure and the Environment, Security and Justice, Economic Affairs, Defense and the Interior and Kingdom Relations will concentrate, together with the representatives on the islands, on any further requests for assistance.

Minister Plasterk of the Interior and Kingdom Relations has spoken extensively with and maintains contact with Prime Minister Marlin of St. Maarten and through the Kingdom Representative with the authorities in St. Eustatius and Saba.

According to the KNMI (Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute) code red is in force. Irma is now a hurricane of the 5th category.

In the past investments were already made in making the islands resistant for a possible hurricane, so that the damage turns out better than anticipated. For example, many power lines were placed underground and contingency plans are improved. (RCN Caribbean Netherlands)

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Complete preparations! 11 Hurricane Shelters!

GREAT BAY, (DCOMM) – Hurricane Irma is a major system.  The country is under a Hurricane Warning. 

Residents should complete hurricane preparations by the end of the day on Tuesday, September 5, and this should include a plan of action with respect to where a person would stay prior to the arrival of the hurricane if they feel unsafe in their home. Use the opportunity now to make arrangements with family or friends as this is part of an individual’s responsibility. 

At the same time, review your Hurricane Supply Kit which should contain your identity documents (eg Passport, ID Card, Driver’s License, SZV Card), non-perishable food, water, medication, flashlight, battery operated radio, and insurance documents. These should be placed in a ready-to-go bag when staying with family or friends.

At the beginning of every hurricane season you are asked to review your Hurricane Supply Kit and to make sure its restocked and ready to use.

Shelters should only be used as a last resort and will be open after the hurricane has passed for persons who have been displaced and for up to 48-hours.

Be responsible, be prepared!

Weather conditions are forecasts to deteriorate Tuesday evening.

11 Hurricane Shelters:

The list of hurricane 11 shelters are:

New Testament Baptist Church (Philipsburg), Sr. Marie Laurence School (Middle Region), Community Center (Dutch Quarter), Community Center (Belvedere), Milton Peters College (South Reward), Rupert I. Maynard Youth Community Center (St. Peters);

Sint Maarten Academy (Cul de Sac), National Institute for Professional Advancement (NIPA, Cay Hill), Leonard Connor School (Cay Bay), Christian Fellowship Church (Cole Bay), Allan C. Halley Community Centre (Simpson Bay).

Tune in to 107.9 FM for Official Government Information:

Notices and information will be released to the media and via the Government Radio Station 107.9FM with respect to the national preparations and advisories for the people of Sint Maarten.  

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CHAMBER OF COMMERCE ANNOUNCES CLOSURE DATES

PHILIPSBURG - The St. Maarten Chamber of Commerce and Industry(COCI) is announcing its closure dates due to the oncoming hurricane Irma:

  • September 4th, 2017 (Closed at 3.00pm)
  • September 5th, 2017 (Closed until further notice)

The St. Maarten Chamber of Commerce & Industry will keep the business community & public updated on its status.

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Boat owners and mariners strongly advised not to stay on-board during passing of Hurricane Irma

GREAT BAY, (DCOMM) – Boat owners and mariners are strongly advised by the Fire Department/Office of Disaster Management (ODM) not to stay on-board their vessel during the passing of Hurricane Irma

ODM is requesting mariners and boat owners to make special arrangements to stay with friends or in a hotel, and not to remain on their vessel during the passing of a hurricane while moored in the Simpson Bay Lagoon or Oyster Pond.

Hurricane Irma is a major system that will be passing near Sint Maarten and the ODM once again is strongly recommending the aforementioned for their own safety to not stay on-board during the passing of this major hurricane. 

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Gregory Damoen new member for Cft Curaçao and Sint Maarten

SINT MAARTEN/CURACAO - The Council of Ministers of the Kingdom has appointed Mr. Gregory Damoen on 1 September as a member of the Board of financial supervision of Curaçao and Sint Maarten on behalf of Curacao.

Mr. Damoen herewith succeeds Mr. Alberto Romero, whose term of office terminated on February 1st, 2017.

Upon the recommendation of the Prime Minister of Curaçao and in agreement with the Council of Ministers, the Council of Ministers of the Kingdom decided to appoint Mr. Gregory Damoen as new Board member for Curaçao as of September 1st, 2017.

The appointment is for a period of three years with the possibility of a one-off extension of another 3 years. Mr. Damoen is Deputy Director Risk & Compliance at the Central Bank of Curaçao and Sint Maarten.

Prior to his career at the Central Bank, he has worked amongst others as Director of Finance for the Government of the former Netherlands Antilles. Gregory Damoen has a master in accounting. In addition, he is a member of the Curaçao Advisory Council; he will immediately resign from this secondary position.

He succeeds Mr. Romero, who has been a Board member as from the establishment of the Cft. After having been a member of the Cft for ten years, on behalf of respectively the former Netherlands Antilles and then for Curaçao, Mr. Romero has passed on his position to Mr. Damoen.

Cft Chairman prof. dr. Raymond Gradus is pleased that with the appointment of Mr. Damoen, the Board of financial supervision of Curaçao and Sint Maarten is complete again.

Ms. Sybilla Dekker is member on behalf of the Netherlands and Ms. Maria Plantz on behalf of Sint Maarten. He warmly welcomes Mr. Damoen on behalf of all Board members within the Cft and looks forward to a good cooperation.

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