Three households were evacuated from rising floodwaters in Woodland yesterday, after the New Cut Channel burst its banks, spilling water into the community.
Recapping the impact of Wednesday and Thursday’s adverse weather, Penal Debe Regional Corporation (PDRC) chairman Dr Allen Sammy told Guardian Media their disaster management unit (DMU) responded.
“We have four homes, three of which we had to move the people out and take them to families so we can’t do an assessment (of damage). In the other one, we had to give a mattress and two hampers. We had given 500 (sand) bags out today (yesterday), yesterday (Wednesday) we gave out 750 bags,” he said.
Sammy said the PDRC’s Disaster Management Unit would be on standby through yesterday evening to respond to further floods he anticipated would come.
“It is high tide and the situation is grim in that we think more water is coming from the Princes Town area, from rainfalls emanating there as well as from the Southern Range via the Curomata River,” he said.
Guardian Media visited Woodland yesterday to view the breached riverbank. The loud surge of overflowing water could be heard from an estimated 800 feet away. Though too far away to see, the breach was confirmed via aerial drone footage captured by Guardian Media cameraman Ivan Toolsie.
In the nearby community at Rahamat Trace, residents were sitting outside their flooded homes.
“My son woke me up about 6 o’clock this morning when he got up to ready for school and when I got up, right around the house, inside the living room was covered in water,” Timmy Seegobin said.
“My wife sit down inside there right now and she crying because I mean, how many times you’d go through something like this? Every time the rain fall, you have to be worried.”
He said this was not the first time they had been flooded out for the year, with the most recent being around a month ago. He said they did not anticipate the floods, despite official warnings, because the Ministry of Works and Transport’s Drainage Division did work on the riverbank during the week.
Another resident, Anganie Hosein, said they’ve unfortunately gotten accustomed to the occurrence. Outside her flat house is an adjoining two-storey wooden house. She explained this was built so the family could have somewhere to stay for the week or so it typically takes for the floodwaters to recede.
Meanwhile, South Oropouche Riverine Flood Action Group president Edward Moodie yesterday questioned where was the pump which was promised to Woodland.
“We want the pump in Woodland. What this would do, in areas where we have breaches along the South Oropouche river, that pump would kick in and keep emptying back and you would not have the rise that you are expecting,” he said.
The president of the Woodland Flood Group also echoed Moodie’s call.