JIS News

Extensive drain cleaning in St. James, carried out by the National Works Agency (NWA) and the St. James Parish Council, minimised the damage caused by Tropical Storm Gustav, which lashed sections of Jamaica last week.
According to Disaster Preparedness Co-ordinator for St. James, Amanda Thompson, persons were affected by strong winds, which destroyed roofs, and also from flood waters, which caused damage to the roadways and farms.
“As we went along the roadways assessing the effects of the storm, we found a number of land slippages, shifting of the lands, damaged houses and farm lands and much flood waters all around. The Seven Rivers area of Cambridge was hardest hit and we are expecting to hear from a number of persons who might have suffered from the flooding,” Mrs. Thompson told JIS News.
“The drain cleaning activities were very good and were well done. We did not experience much flooding within the Montego Bay town. I must say thanks to members of the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA), who were quick on the scene to clear whatever garbage and other debris left out there, so that if we were to have another heavy shower and high winds, those things would have been cleared from the road. So, apart from the Seven Rivers to Cambridge areas, where we experienced flooding and up in Arcadia, where the roads were extensively damaged, I would think that the drains cleaned were extensively done. If it were not for that, then it would have been much worse across the parish,” she added.
She further reported that a team from the St. James Parish Council, was currently in the areas continuing assessments of the damage caused by the storm.
Meanwhile, of the 25 emergency shelters that were activated across the western parishes, accommodating over 250 persons, all have been closed except for two, which still have 13 persons. These include the shelter in Hanover at the Axanov Universal Church of God, with 12 persons; and the other at the Broughton Primary School in Westmoreland, with one person.
“All shelters in St. James have since been closed, as persons who stayed just for the night and the next day after the storm, have now returned home,” Mrs. Thompson told JIS News.