Oct. 16, 2001 – While the sun finally peeked through the clouds on Tuesday – the first time since Saturday in most areas of the U.S. Virgin Islands – rain showers followed.
"Showers and thunderstorms will continue from time to time through Tuesday night," said Miguel Sierra, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in San Juan.
Wednesday will be a bit brighter, but still with a chance of showers and thunderstorms.
By Thursday, the skies will be partly sunny.
While the wet weather was good for cisterns, some tourists found it put a damper on their vacations.
Kathy Demar, who manages vacation villas in St. John, said one honeymoon couple asked for an extra two days free because they were rained out.
"I called the owners, and they said yes," she said.
While the honeymoon couple is again smiling, so is Mother Nature.
"The rainfall soaked in," said Rafe Boulon, the V.I. National Park's chief of environmental resources.
He said that because the rain fell lightly instead of in torrents, it had a chance to benefit plants instead of running downhill to the ocean.
While some bays, including Coral Bay, St. John, did look muddy around the edges, indicating sediment, the bays were not nearly as bad as they sometimes are after heavy rains.
Boulon said that while Coral Bay collects runoff from a large area, much of it in the midst of development and with unpaved roads, the chances of sediment making its way downhill were good.
As the islands dry out, officials warned residents to empty containers outside their houses. They serve as breeding grounds for mosquitoes, which tend to proliferate after several days of rain.
"Plants that grow in water are the biggest culprit," Health Department spokesman Lee Vanterpool said.
He said that when requested, the Health Department's Environmental Health Division will visit homes to treat water that contains mosquito larvae. The rain and wind experienced since Saturday caused only a few problems. Rocks slid down the hills around Coral Bay to Centerline Road, which is a common occurrence when it rains.
There was a report from St. Thomas of a streetlight blowing over in Tutu. Large puddles developed behind the Renaissance Grand Beach Resort and in Havensight.
In St. Croix a resident reported that the sun was shining nearly all day Tuesday, a pleasant change from the rain and wind of the previous few days. Rudy O'Reilly at the Natural Resources Conservation Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture said that he hopes the rain seeped through the soil to recharge St. Croix's aquifer. However, to improve seepage, he said St. Croix needs more ponds to hold the water.
To reach the Health Department, call 774-6880 in St. Thomas and 773-1311 in St. Croix.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email