Road collapses near bridge in Carolina Village, Couva

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Villagers consider where to pass after the Mt Pleasant Road in Carolina Village, Couva, collapsed on Wednesday. Photo by Lincoln Holder

On Wednesday, a deplorable road near a bridge collapsed in Carolina Village in Couva, making it impassable for vehicles.

The Mt Pleasant Road, residents said, is the main route connecting neighbouring communities such as Springvale in Claxton Bay, Milton Village, and Forres Park.

Couva South MP Rudranath Indarsingh met with affected residents at the site and appealed to the authorities to repair the bridge immediately.

Photo by Lincoln Holder

“It needs an immediate solution. A bridge can make a difference in saving lives. If the police have to respond to a crime, they cannot come into the area. If a pregnant woman has to get to the hospital, it is a problem,” Indarsingh said.

The Opposition MP called on Rural Development and Local Government Minister Faris Al-Rawi, and Works and Transport Minister Rohan Sinanan to intervene.

Indarsingh said, “Mr Al-Rawi must ensure that this is dealt with in a very decisive manner.”

The residents complained they now have to take alternative routes, which means spending extra time and money to go to and from places.

Couva South MP Rudranath Indarsingh looks at the collapsed Mt Pleasant Road, Carolina Village, Couva on Wednesday. Photo by Lincoln Holder

Seeta Krishindath said residents recently placed barrels along the road to alert drivers of its bad state. The villagers also spread gravel on the road to help make it somewhat passable for vehicles.

She added, “Last night, we had lots of rain. I was surprised to see barrels floating away in the river this morning.”

Several people were stranded in their homes in the area owing to flooding.

Many residents of Carli Bay, Couva, were also affected.

Allison Julien-Jackson of Fairview Avenue said she lost many items in the floodwater. She recalled that a friend called her by phone early on Wednesday and told her to look outside.

Julien-Jackson’s home was surrounded by water. Her household items were already water-soaked.

She lives with her husband and three children.

“I am keeping the faith. I lost everything. A lot of families are affected. There is a river nearby which connects to the sea. This is the worst flood we have seen in this area in years,” she said.

A close-up view of the Mt Pleasant Road, Carolina Village, Couva, which is now impassable to vehicles. Photo by Lincoln Holder

At a key-distribution ceremony at the San Fernando City Corporation on Wednesday, Al-Rawi responded to critics who blamed the Government for flooding.

“They could blame the Government all they want. It is the weather, climate change and the fact that many of our citizens build in the flood zone because the land was there.”

He said members of the disaster management units of all the corporations were on the ground monitoring the situation and helping affected people.