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Repair work has started on sections of the Rome Gully, which is adjacent to communities along the Lyndhurst Road/Rousseau Road corridor, in Kingston, in an effort to ensure the safety of residents and motorists in the area.

The work, which commenced on October 31, include: cleaning of the gully; repacking, and extensive repair of existing damage.

The gully suffered significant erosion prior to, and consequent on the passage of Hurricane Sandy on October 24, which unleashed torrential rains which caused heavy flooding in the channel.

Speaking to journalists on November 1, following a tour of the area, Minister of State in the Ministry of Transport, Works and Housing, Richard Azan, informed that the work forms part of emergency repairs in order to maintain the structure.

"There is a house that is in danger right now and we are trying to make sure that we save that house (along with several others). Additionally, the invert under the bridge is also damaged,” he said.

The State Minister added that the repairs are expected to yield significant benefits for both communities and adjoining areas.

Regarding the cost of the work, Mr. Azan said he was unable to give a specific figure, as the initial estimate had to be revised in light of additional damage that was sustained during the Hurricane’s passage.

In the meantime, the State Minister noted that ongoing maintenance of the gullies across the island is critical in ensuring that the structures are safe.

"It is something that we have to put (forward), as part of overall plan to maintain the gullies, not only the big ones but the small drains as well,” he added.

For his part, Corporate Communications Manager, National Works Agency (NWA), Stephen Shaw, said the work is critical “as the bridge which spans the gully along Rousseau Road is in danger of collapsing, as the inverts under the bridge have been significantly eroded."