JIS News

Flood waters in the district of Chigwell, eastern Hanover, continued to rise Tuesday (November 2), even as disaster preparedness coordinators go on full alert, in preparation for the bad weather conditions likely to result from the latest weather system, Tomas.
Disaster Preparedness Coordinator in Hanover, Olga Fae Headley, told JIS News that the flood water levels in the districts of Pearces Village and Forrest are subsiding, but continue to rise in Chigwell. She added that, while it was heartening to see that the water recede in Pearces Village and Forrest, there is still a great deal of land area covered by water.
“Chigwell continues to rise at an alarming pace so, I guess, as the others go down, Chigwell goes up,” she stated.
She posited the view that the situation is due to the fact that Chigwell is part of a land basin which is at a lower altitude than the other villages, and the underground drainage from those villages filters into Chigwell.
Turning to the number of persons still displaced by flooding in the three districts, Mrs. Headley said that approximately 49 families are unable to return home.
“There are 23 families in Forrest that are out of their homes, there are seven families in Pearces Village; so nobody has returned to their houses yet. They cannot return, even though the water is going down, and there are 19 families in Chigwell that, right now, are having problems,” she pointed out.
Of the displaced families, only two are staying in an emergency shelter in Chigwell. The others are staying with friends and relatives in their respective districts.
She said that a cooperative effort between the Hanover Parish Council, Hanover Health Department and the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM) should provide monitoring and control of the health situation in all three districts. Fish is being added to the flood waters as a means of vector control, and fogging is also being carried out.
“I must warn the people in the area again, that they are not to swim in the water there are lots of bacteria in the water. The bodies of water are contaminated, so they should not be swimming in it,” she insisted.
Mrs. Headley said that all shelter managers in the parish have been put on high alert, in preparation for the Tropical System Tomas. An emergency meeting, with all relevant agencies, will be held in the Lucea Town Hall on Wednesday (November 3), 2010.

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