Trelawny communities hit by flooding

Observer staff reporter

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

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CLARKS TOWN, Trelawny — S ections of Trelawny were flooded for the second time in a week as heavy rainfall pounded parts of the parish from Sunday night into yesterday morning, causing severe hardship for some residents.

At least one school — Wakefield Primary — had to suspend classes because of rising water along the flood-prone road in the community that leads to the school.

Communities such as Mahagony Hall, Duanvale, Rio Bueno, Clarks Town were among the affected areas, however, the Jackson Town, Barnstaple and Stewart Town areas appeared to be hardest hit by the flash flooding.

In the community of Barnstaple, near Jackson Town, where a woman drowned as a result of flooding last week, residents of at least two households lost most of their belongings as high-rising water covered sections of their houses, damaging their furniture, appliances, motor vehicles, lifestock and other valuables.

It has not been an easy time for one couple — Clifton and Ambrozine Perry — who reside in Barnstaple.

“A little before the 14th of December we had a flood and water come in my house about two feet and we move out, then [returned when it receded]. By last week Wednesday night it flood we out again; water come up to me navel,“ said Mr Perry. “We have to come through the window to escape and take out the pickneys, some on me back,” he added.

The troubles of the Perrys continued on Sunday when rising waters flooded their home again. “Everything in the house get wet up; everything lost. The mattress wet up, the bed, dresser — everything wet up,” said a disgruntled Clifton Perry.

Yesterday, the post office and the Inland Revenue office in Jackson Town closed their doors as a result of the threat of flooding.

Meanwhile, for the second time since last week, the road from Clarks Town to Duncans was impassable because of flooding in front of the Long Pond factory.

Also, at the Bottom Town section of Clarks Town, which was also affected by flooding last week, water settled in some yards and along roadways, but there were no reports of heavy damage to household items in that community.

However, Cockburn Pen was not spared as heavy flood -waters marooned more than 400 residents.

Residents in some of the affected areas complained to the Jamaica Observer that the undisciplined among them contributed to the flooding because of the improper dumping of solid waste into sink holes that usually take water off the road.

Victor Wright, the Member of Parliament for Trelawny Northern who yesterday toured some of the affected areas, lamented the lack of response from Government agencies to his cry for relief for affected residents.

“A significant part of issue as Member of Parliament is the lack of response from the NWA and other agencies. I have made appeals, I have sent emails, made phone calls, and I am so disappointed with the response I am getting. I am appealing for assistance for these residents to get them out of their dilemma. I can do so much and no more from my Constituency Development Fund. It is really the government agencies who need to provide the relief that these residents need,” said the Trelawny MP.

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