U.S. Embassy Port of Spain released the following Emergency Message for U.S. citizens on August 9, 2011:
The Embassy in Port of Spain is issuing this Emergency Message to inform U.S. citizens that the State of Emergency declared by the Government of Trinidad and Tobago (GOTT) on August 21 has been extended by three months, to approximately mid-December. Curfew hours have been modified to 11 p.m. to 4 a.m.
On the evening of August 21, the GOTT declared a “Limited State of Emergency” that took effect at midnight August 22 and instituted a curfew in six areas. On September 4, Parliament approved an extension of the State of Emergency for a period of three months, and the Government modified the hours of the curfew.
The order allows for increased military presence and patrols throughout the country. Police and soldiers have broad authority to search for and seize contraband, make arrests and, in specific neighborhoods (listed below), implement a curfew currently in effect from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. Under Trinidad and Tobago law, certain constitutional rights can be suspended under a “State of Emergency”.
The GOTT has advised that individuals should not move about during the hours of 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. within the areas under curfew. Local police stations may issue permits to those who demonstrate the need for essential movements during those hours. Individuals flying into Trinidad and Tobago may obtain permits at the airport in order to proceed home.
The following are the locations under curfew from 11:00 p.m. until 4:00 a.m.:
The City of Port of Spain
The City of San Fernando
The Borough of Arima
The Borough of Chaguanas
The San Juan/Laventille Regional Corporation
The Diego Martin Regional Corporation
The Embassy has instructed its own American staff members to stay at home between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 4:00 a.m., and to carry two forms of photo identification at all times.
The Embassy understands that many Americans in Trinidad may be directly impacted by these curfews and encourages citizens to plan properly so as not to be adversely impacted by the Limited State of Emergency.
Valuable security information about living and travelling abroad can be found at the following Department of State website: http://travel.state.gov/travel/tips/safety/safety_1747.html.
For the latest security information, U.S. citizens living and traveling abroad should regularly monitor the Department’s Bureau of Consular Affairs Internet web site at http://travel.state.gov, where the current Worldwide Caution, Travel Alerts, Travel Warnings, and health-information resources can be found. Up-to-date information on security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll free in the U.S. and Canada or, for callers in other areas by calling a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
U.S. citizens in Trinidad and Tobago who need emergency services should call the Embassy at 868-622-6371 for assistance. The same number can be used after-hours for emergency assistance.