Tue | Dec 18, 2018

Health department raises water treatment concerns in Hanover

Published:Friday | May 11, 2018 | 12:00 AMBryan Miller/Gleaner Writer
Sheridan Samuels

Western Bureau:

It appears that all is not well with water coming from the 23 minor water-supply systems scattered across the parish of Hanover. The Hanover Health Department has raised concerns about the quality of the water with the Hanover Municipal Corporation (HMC).

Huel Jackson, the chief engineering officer at the HMC, raised the issue at the corporation's recent Infrastructure, Development and Traffic Management Committee meeting. Jackson said that he had been contacted by the health authorities to address issues related to the water quality.

The Gleaner understands that no chlorination has been taking place at some of the water systems because chlorination chambers have been either in a deplorable state or non-existent.


Mayor upset


Lucea's mayor, Councillor Sheridan Samuels, was upset upon hearing the concerns from the health department. He argued that the facilities should not have been allowed to reach such levels of deterioration, and the situation should be remediated immediately.

However, Jackson steered clear of accepting any liability for the problem, saying that the corporation needed to have a superintendent of minor water supplies in place to handle that responsibility. He further stated that while the repairs to the chambers and accessing the chlorine were important, the matter needed to be looked at in a holistic way if a long-term solution is to be found.

In February 2017, similar concerns were raised by the Hanover Health Department about the minor water-supply systems in the parish. Following the airing of those concerns, a special vote was taken by the HMC to put aside J$500,000 to purchase chlorine for the systems.

"My problem is that the state of deterioration now should never have happened because we have someone here at Roads and Works (within the HMC) who is in charge of minor water supplies. So we should not be getting these complaints as we should have been made aware through reports from that officer that the chlorination rooms needed repairs," said Samuels.