Elderly couple and grandchild homeless after landslide in Portland
Gareth Davis, Gleaner Writer
A family of four, including an elderly couple and a six-year-old girl, are homeless this evening after landslides caused by heavy rains over the past two days destroyed their home in Mill Bank, in the Rio Grande Valley of Portland.
There are unconfirmed reports that at least three other houses in Mill Bank are covered by mudslides.
63-year-old Owen Campbell told The Gleaner/Power 106 News Centre that he managed to move his elderly wife and granddaughter to safety before the roof of his home collapsed under a pile of dirt.
It was part of the dislocation caused by the heavy rainfall in the eastern parishes of Portland and St Thomas since Thursday.
Campbell says his family lost everything and are now living in a nearby shed.
Meanwhile, Member of Parliament for East Portland Dr Lynvale Bloomfield says the rains have also caused extensive damage to the Seaman’s Valley main road, which underwent major rehabilitation work last year.
He says a technical team from the National Works Agency was expected to tour sections of the Rio Grande Valley this afternoon to get a first hand view of the damage to roads and other infrastructure.
West Portland Member of Parliament Daryl Vaz says he has made contact with the charity group Food for the Poor to arrange emergency assistance to Campbell and his family.
Vaz says officials from Food for the Poor are scheduled to visit the area on Monday to conduct a site inspection.
He says Food for the Poor has indicated that if a suitable site is identified it was prepared to assist with the construction of a relief shelter for the family.