Penal, Barrackpore under heavy water

In central Trinidad, the Trinidad and Tobago Meteorological Service and the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Management (ODPM) both said they received reports of a tornado in central Trinidad.

MET officials said they received reports of weather patterns which seemed similar to a tornado around noon.

They said the reports emanated from the Caroni plains in the vicinity of Warrenville.

Met Service officials added that they did not receive reports of any injuries or damages to property as a result of this unusual weather.

The MET office confirmed the sighting of a tornado in Warrenville, Caroni with subsequent heavy rains, winds and flooding in Freeport and Chaguanas. MET officials said this was a result of thundershowers on the north western part of the island yesterday.

But in South, Mahabalsingh Trace, Rio Claro 45 persons had to seek temporary shelter with other family members after high winds blew off eight roof tops in the area and some residents are living under tarpaulin roofs as they repaired their homes.

Residents say there is no power supply since the Trinidad and Tobago Electricity Commission (TTEC) took it off on Friday to prevent any fire.

One resident, Cecil Persad, 45, said his 11 member family now live in a tiny room after wind ripped off his roof and drenched over $80,000 worth of household appliances.

“We are in dire need of assistance to buy wood and galvanise to fix the house,” said Cecil.

He said heavy flooding cut off Mahabalsingh Trace from the Cunapo Southern Main Road and vehicular traffic slowed significantly as drivers drove on the submerged roads.

Persad said chairman of the Mayaro Regional Corporation, Ramlochan Panchoo, toured the area and promised to assist with much needed building supplies, but up to yesterday nothing has arrived.

However the Ministry of Social Development provided food hampers yesterday. Five homes were still under four feet of murky flood waters in Seuradge Trace, Penal.

One resident, Leela Heeralal, 49, said that she does not want her home to be robbed so she prefers to sleep in a flooded house and prepare hot meals at a nearby neighbour.

She said that Friday’s torrential storms are to be blamed for the state of the area and not any government body.

“Flooding has been taking place in this area for years and I just think it is the bad weather that caused the flood and not bad drains or the Government. Everything I have is wet — deep freeze, refrigerator, all of my furniture,” she said.

When Newsday visited Seuradge Trace two members of the Penal Debe Regional Corporation were assessing damages to homes in the area, but residents say they have never received any compensation for flood damages to their homes.

More flooding was also seen in Khanai Trace, Barrackpore, where Sankar Park was totally submerged by muddy flood water and cars splashed their way through four feet of water.


"Penal, Barrackpore under heavy water"

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