Wed | Oct 20, 2021

More water lock-offs for Kingston

Published:Monday | July 20, 2020 | 12:25 AM
Pauline White’s community of Brook Valley, Duhaney Park, has suffered regular water lock-offs for days and weeks at a time.
Pauline White’s community of Brook Valley, Duhaney Park, has suffered regular water lock-offs for days and weeks at a time.

Pauline White and other residents of Brook Valley, Duhaney Park, have been suffering from water shortages that have forced them to go without the life-saving commodity for days or even weeks at a time for approximately two years.

Those challenges in the St Andrew Western community have worsened since the emergence of COVID-19 four months ago and are set to escalate across the wider Corporate Area with the National Water Commission (NWC) announcing that drought-linked declines in its inflows will trigger a tightening of supply to customers who are served by the Mona Treatment Plant.

The plant serves vast swathes of Greater Kingston, including the downtown region, Maxfield, New Kingston, Cross Roads, and as far away as Harbour View.

Effective 6 p.m. today, some customers will experience low pressure or lock-offs during the period of restriction, which will last 11-12 hours a day.

The NWC blamed seven months of below-normal rainfall, as well as increased demand for sanitisation amid the COVID-19 pandemic, for the austerity plan.

As at Friday, July 18, the Mona Reservoir was at 38.2 per cent of its capacity while the Hermitage Dam was at 31.5 per cent.

The new supply mandate is likely to mean little to White, who has grappled with supply problems for what seems a lifetime.

“COVID-19 is here, and it’s hard to deal with it when they say you have to wash hands and you have no water coming at home,” White lamented.

Anthony Hylton, member of parliament for St Andrew Western, where Duhaney Park is located, said that he has tried to alleviate the community’s water woes.

“The problem is not with me. It’s with the NWC. They are not being transparent,” he said.

Donjanelle Robinson contributed to this story.