Natural disasters

Hurricanes

The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June to November. In the Caribbean this frequently coincides with heavy rains, which may cause flash floods and landslides.You should monitor local and international weather updates from the US National Hurricane Centre and follow the advice of local authorities and your tour operator.

Hurricanes Irma and Maria caused some local flooding and minor damage to buildings in the north and east of the country in September 2017.

See our Tropical Cyclones page for advice on what to do if you are caught up in a storm.

Earthquakes

There are occasional earthquakes in the Dominican Republic. To protect yourself during an earthquake, you should drop to the ground, take cover and hold on until the shaking stops. If you’re inside a building don’t exit until it’s safe to do so. If you’re outside, move away from buildings, streetlights and electricity wires. After the earthquake don’t run as there may be aftershocks or debris in your path. If you become trapped, tap on a pipe or wall so rescuers can find you. Only shout as a last resort as this may cause you to inhale dust. In the event of an earthquake, the Dominican Government authorities, fire-fighters and police will provide help to foreigners. 

If a major earthquake occurs close to shore, you should follow the instructions of the local authorities, bearing in mind that a tsunami could arrive within minutes.

The US Federal Emergency Management Agency has advice about what to do before during and after an earthquake and tsunami