Gareth Davis, Gleaner Writer
PORT ANTONIO, Portland:
PORTLAND'S BASIC infrastructure has been badly damaged by Hurricane Sandy, which left a trail of devastation across the parish.
The Category One hurricane toppled dozens of utility poles, damaged several roadways, uprooted several trees, and blew off roofs in just about every community in the parish.
"We were hit hard," commented Benny White, mayor of Port Antonio.
According to White, "It will take some time for those utility poles to be restored. Several roadways are still blocked; some have been partially cleared. The roadway at Friday is blocked and is impassable to vehicular traffic. It is just total chaos and devastation as residents are scurrying to see whatever building material they can retrieve to repair their damaged dwellings."
Mayor White said the agriculture sector was also badly affected, and once again, farmers have suffered heavy losses.
ROOF BLOWN OFF
Donna Simpson, a resident who is now being housed at a shelter, told The Gleaner yesterday that she lost her roof while cooking breakfast at her home in Fairy Hill.
"The wind was blowing hard and I felt the house shaking," said Simpson. "The next thing I heard was a sound as if someone was ripping off my rooftop. The next thing I knew was that zinc was flying off one by one, and all my furniture and appliances got wet."
Meantime, a work team from the Portland Parish Council is trying to clear a number of roadways leading from Dolphin Bay to Hectors River, where several utility poles have fallen.