There were calls for urgent measures to alleviate flooding yesterday, as several parts of the country were inundated by floodwaters, leaving hundreds of residents marooned in their homes.
Mayaro MP Rushton Paray said repeated floods in the Mayaro communities and other parts of the country demanded immediate and extensive action from the Drainage Division of the Ministry of Works and Transport.
“Minister Rohan Sinanan must direct the division to urgently initiate measures for a speedy runoff of the overflowing watercourses and remedial steps to avert further floods,” Paray said in a press release yesterday.
Noting that rivers and tributaries in the Mayaro constituency were all extremely close to full capacity, he said further rainfall could cause an overflow of riverbanks.
He added, “The Disaster Management Unit (DMU) of Mayaro/Rio Claro Regional Corporation is reporting that these water channels require urgent cleaning and maintenance. At St Ann’s East, the water is stagnant and any rainfall within the next few hours would lead to floods.”
He said homeowners and farmers continue to lose property, food crops and livestock.
“In some cases, home appliances, beds, schoolbooks, furniture and other essentials have been wrecked. The destruction of vegetables and farm animals has already led to increased costs for consumers, many of whom are struggling to make ends meet,” he said.
Meanwhile, over 200 homes were under water along the Penal/Quinam Road in Penal, with the water level at waist height in some areas and only accessible to heavy vehicles.
Fyzabad was among the hardest hit areas.
Resident Vishram Deoroop told Guardian Media that several roads were impassable but he had been walking through the floods assisting residents.
“I came out to help other villagers and see what they could salvage,” he said.
An elderly resident at Pluck Road, San Francique, said she had no choice but to walk through the floodwaters because she needed grocery items.
In Woodland, fishermen ensured that they secured their boats at the New Cut Channel, as the river was almost filled to capacity.
Fyzabad Chamber of Commerce president Angie Jairam said the Government must invest in infrastructure to bring some relief for the future. Noting that some areas in Fyzabad were in need infrastructural works, she said some residents in those areas were marooned since Tuesday night.
“Reports coming in that some have lost their valuables once again. With more rain expected, people are very frustrated at the moment. We are in touch with our members and the general communities to offer assistance with the councillors,” she said.
Hopeful that the Government will immediately act to ease the residents’ pressures, she said social services must help affected residents with food and other necessities, including school supplies as many children lost their books and uniforms.