Is the Fern Gully river rising?
The Editor, Sir
The authorities in St Ann need to quickly investigate if the Fern Gully river is once more emerging. There is a fairly strong stream of water running out of Fern Gully and it appears that the source of this water is the original river that ran through Fern Gully and which carved the gully through the landscape in the long, long past.
We should never ignore the reality that the town of Ocho Rios sited is below hills out of which several rivers originate. Indeed the name of the town 'Ocho Rios' is Spanish and the English equivalent is 'Eight Rivers'. If it is that the river is emerging in Fern Gully, this would not be the first occasion that it has occurred. Indeed, I can recall two occasions on which the river emerged in Fern Gully. On one of those occasions, the water flowing from the recently emerged river was very heavy and caused panic among several persons who had to traverse the Fern Gully road.
by now, someone in authority ought to have become aware that there is a stream running out of the ground in Fern Gully and along the road, all the way into the gullies and into the sea.
DEAL WITH IT
A proper assessment ought to be made of the situation and the public informed of what is being done to deal with it, and also if there is any possible danger that the emerging river poses to the public.
There have been instances in other countries where an underground stream emerged violently, generating a river sufficiently strong to cause damage to properties and loss of life. On the two previous occasions when the river emerged in Fern Gully, there is no record of significant damage to property or any loss of life. However, we should not take any chance and assume that there will be no danger to members of the community. It is better to act now and take all steps to protect members of the public, than to react when the horse or, in this case, the river has gone through the gate.
Perhaps the St Ann Municipal Corporation should use its office to contact all relevant government departments and authorities and have them make an assessment of the situation, then advise the public of what is happening in Fern Gully.
Linton P. Gordon