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Hanover is blessed, says relieved Lucea mayor

Published:Thursday | May 18, 2017 | 12:00 AMBryan Miller
Sheridan Samuels

Western Bureau:

Mayor of Lucea Sheridan Samuels is affixing a divine intervention to the fact that Hanover escaped the full fury of the recent flood rains, which devastated several parishes across the island last week.

A relieved Samuels, who is also the chairman of the Hanover Municipal Corporation (HMC), told The Gleaner emphatically that "Hanover is blessed", considering the parish's inability to withstand a deluge such as that which devastated several mid-island parishes, especially Clarendon.

"If we were not proactive at the municipal corporation by putting a major drain-cleaning and maintenance programme with a difference in place, we are sure that even the town of Lucea would have experienced some amount of flooding," said Samuels.

In an interview with The Gleaner last Thursday, Samuels explained that what has been instituted in the town of Lucea and across the parish is a daily drain-cleaning and maintenance programme which is being funded through the Parochial Revenue Fund (PRF) for the parish.

"It's a kind of length-man system and this system has really paid off as, formerly, it took far less rain than what has occurred now for the town of Lucea to be flooded," noted Samuels.

However, the mayor made mention of a leaking roof on the municipal building in Lucea, along with minor flooding in areas such as Santoy, Dam Road, March Town and Cave Valley, in western Hanover, as the only negatives coming out of the continual rainfall.

With regard to the leaking municipal building, Samuels said the National Heritage Trust would have to be contacted for the necessary repairs to be carried out on the building, which is a designated heritage site.

It should be interesting to note that because of the limited rainfall across Hanover, there were no reasons to open any of the parish's five designated emergency shelters.

"We did a recent inspection of all the shelters and they, along with the shelter managers, are ready and waiting in case the necessity should arise," said Kenisha Stennet-Dunbar, Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management disaster coordinator for Hanover.

Janel Ricketts, the community relations officer with the National Works Agency (NWA), said land slippages had occurred along the Cascade to Jericho; Flint River to Cascade; Cascade to Flower Hill; and Chelsea Bridge to Cacoon roadways, but that the agency had addressed the situation.