Categorized | Local

Hurricane Earl dowsed rain on Montserrat cause flooding

by Bennette Roach

Category 3 Hurricane Earl lashed the northeastern Caribbean on Sunday night (Aug 30, 2010) into Monday as the eye  passes well to the north of Montserrat, on a course that threatened the eastern United States later this week. Some major damages were recorded to a limited few, especially between Little Bay and Carr’s Bay, not from the sea as may have been expected, as well flooding of ghauts impacting main roads.

The eye of the storm passed 100 miles away north east of Montserrat, which was caught in the outer bands which usually pack a lot of rain with a less wind.

Flooding was the result as it thundered, lightening and rain all night. Roads from the north to the south suffered damage as bridges and ghauts were blocked from the flood waters and boulders that came crashing down.

Nantes River was blocked and the flood water flowed over on the road and found its way like the river and down into Rams Enterprises basement storage. Heavy equipment were still working on that bridge at 2.00 p.m., clearing it to ready it for the continuing threats of rain.

Runaway Ghaut was blocked from mudslides, which made the road impassable from either side.

Casava Ghaut suffered most damaged as the bridge barrier was broken after it became blocked and the result was boulders and other debris also blocked that passage.

By mid-day all these were cleared and traffic was passing free while the clean-up and temporary repairs were carried out.

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Far in the north the port suffered much damage, not from the sea waters but from waters rushing off the hills down to the low lying lands. Culverts that had been subject of criticism some years ago were apparently easily blocked causing damage to buildings and flooding of the port premises. PWD officials also cited blocking by debris further upstream from the Ghaut which comes down from the hills in that area.

At Carr’s Bay Romeo Wayside hardware store suffered damage from being flooded. This was the result as Manager Julian Romeo explained, “from the blockage in the nearby ghauts.” This was not the first time this has happened, but no one heeds the complaints that this should be corrected to prevent the flooding that results. They were still assessing their damage towards the end of the week, as they moved into newer and higher structured quarters which were still being constructed.

The flooding occurred after the waters had caused some damage to Delta Petroleum offices and facilities south of Romeo’s. Delta Petroleum suffered severe damage from the rains. They reported that the property’s fence footings were eroded and washed away as well as old empty cylinders also. Their Backup generator was out of commission and while they could not be serviced by electricity, Delta issued caution to gas and utility users to be cautious about their use of gas and petrol until their electricity was restored. “Water damage was worst than expected,” they said, adding that their “office buildings had water up to about 6 ft.”

The home of Cherry Browne at Carrs Bay was completely inundated with mud, water and debris. She explained that the water broke the wall and rushed in. The water destroyed everything she said.

LIME up to Friday had reported that some of its telephone services had been interrupted.

Farmers also experienced losses the wind blew banana trees to the ground causing damage. The farmers had limited access to recover what they could because of trees which had fallen blocking their path.

WATER RATIONING

The managing director of Montserrat Utilities Ltd. (MUL) Peter White reported that water rationing had become necessary to prevent possible contaminated water to enter the storage tanks on the water line. While seeking the cooperation of the public, he said explained would ration the water which if not protected would only last three days.

Shortly after, he reported that the island was in good shape. However, “…we have a few issues which have crapped up, those could not be really predicted until the water is back on stream.”
He quickly reported, “I believe that if nothing further happens I think we should be all set, we should be pretty much back close to normal,” noting, “people would have realized that in allot of instances the water never went off in some areas.”

He finally urged that consumers do not have to boil their drinking water, “as MUL has taken the necessary steps to guarantee safe drinking water.”

The eye of the powerful hurricane passed close to another British Overseas territory, Anguilla, where police said the wind blew the roofs off buildings and damaged utility poles.

Meanwhile another storm Fiona was foaming towards the Leewards but much further north. It became a storm but following behind the powerful Earl it soon fizzled out of existence. Earl meantime continued up just on the outside the U.S. east coast all the way up towards Halifax, Nova Scotia before it died.
Reports from Antigua, said powerful winds and rain destroyed at least one home and at least eight people had to be evacuated, though there were no reports of critical injuries. Emergency response officials said about 350 people were in shelters. Local weather authorities reported at least 5 inches (13 centimeters) of rain and 10-foot (3-meter) waves.

In St. Maarten, the storm toppled trees and knocked out electricity to much of the island but there were no reports of serious damage. Heavy gusts of wind swirled debris across streets that were empty due to a government-imposed curfew.

Cruise lines diverted ships to other ports in the Caribbean and Mexico as a customary precaution for tropical weather. Antigua’s V.C. Bird International Airport closed, and regional airlines LIAT and WINAIR suspended flights.

Forecasters had said on Monday there is a chance the hurricane could brush the U.S. Mid-Atlantic region toward the end of the week, with its closest approach to North Carolina on Thursday or Friday. In any case, the U.S. East Coast is likely to see pounding surf. It would head in a more northerly direction expecting to brush the northeasterly coast of the U.S.

The clean-up and repairs continued well into the week with Minister of Communications and Works Charles Kirnon throwing out praise to workers and others who moved timely to get things back to near normal.

Leading up to the passage of Earl DMCA director Bennett  Kirwan had warned residents to be cautious and prepare for what appears to be a busy season of storms, especially that there was at least one more storm lining up behind Earl. On Thursday evening following a brief thunder storm he had reported the standby generator on Silver Hills was damaged by the lightning storm and the agency is hoping to have it up and running within a few days.

That had knocked several of the communication systems (including ZJB and PTV) out at least temporarily. It was natural also that the problem of access to the hills was limited by the further damaged road.

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A Moment with the Registrar of Lands

by Bennette Roach

Category 3 Hurricane Earl lashed the northeastern Caribbean on Sunday night (Aug 30, 2010) into Monday as the eye  passes well to the north of Montserrat, on a course that threatened the eastern United States later this week. Some major damages were recorded to a limited few, especially between Little Bay and Carr’s Bay, not from the sea as may have been expected, as well flooding of ghauts impacting main roads.

The eye of the storm passed 100 miles away north east of Montserrat, which was caught in the outer bands which usually pack a lot of rain with a less wind.

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Flooding was the result as it thundered, lightening and rain all night. Roads from the north to the south suffered damage as bridges and ghauts were blocked from the flood waters and boulders that came crashing down.

Nantes River was blocked and the flood water flowed over on the road and found its way like the river and down into Rams Enterprises basement storage. Heavy equipment were still working on that bridge at 2.00 p.m., clearing it to ready it for the continuing threats of rain.

Runaway Ghaut was blocked from mudslides, which made the road impassable from either side.

Casava Ghaut suffered most damaged as the bridge barrier was broken after it became blocked and the result was boulders and other debris also blocked that passage.

By mid-day all these were cleared and traffic was passing free while the clean-up and temporary repairs were carried out.

See photos here (You must have a Facebook account)

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=5328766&id=203080105851&ref=fbx_album#!/album.php?aid=214689&id=203080105851

Far in the north the port suffered much damage, not from the sea waters but from waters rushing off the hills down to the low lying lands. Culverts that had been subject of criticism some years ago were apparently easily blocked causing damage to buildings and flooding of the port premises. PWD officials also cited blocking by debris further upstream from the Ghaut which comes down from the hills in that area.

At Carr’s Bay Romeo Wayside hardware store suffered damage from being flooded. This was the result as Manager Julian Romeo explained, “from the blockage in the nearby ghauts.” This was not the first time this has happened, but no one heeds the complaints that this should be corrected to prevent the flooding that results. They were still assessing their damage towards the end of the week, as they moved into newer and higher structured quarters which were still being constructed.

The flooding occurred after the waters had caused some damage to Delta Petroleum offices and facilities south of Romeo’s. Delta Petroleum suffered severe damage from the rains. They reported that the property’s fence footings were eroded and washed away as well as old empty cylinders also. Their Backup generator was out of commission and while they could not be serviced by electricity, Delta issued caution to gas and utility users to be cautious about their use of gas and petrol until their electricity was restored. “Water damage was worst than expected,” they said, adding that their “office buildings had water up to about 6 ft.”

The home of Cherry Browne at Carrs Bay was completely inundated with mud, water and debris. She explained that the water broke the wall and rushed in. The water destroyed everything she said.

LIME up to Friday had reported that some of its telephone services had been interrupted.

Farmers also experienced losses the wind blew banana trees to the ground causing damage. The farmers had limited access to recover what they could because of trees which had fallen blocking their path.

WATER RATIONING

The managing director of Montserrat Utilities Ltd. (MUL) Peter White reported that water rationing had become necessary to prevent possible contaminated water to enter the storage tanks on the water line. While seeking the cooperation of the public, he said explained would ration the water which if not protected would only last three days.

Shortly after, he reported that the island was in good shape. However, “…we have a few issues which have crapped up, those could not be really predicted until the water is back on stream.”
He quickly reported, “I believe that if nothing further happens I think we should be all set, we should be pretty much back close to normal,” noting, “people would have realized that in allot of instances the water never went off in some areas.”

He finally urged that consumers do not have to boil their drinking water, “as MUL has taken the necessary steps to guarantee safe drinking water.”

The eye of the powerful hurricane passed close to another British Overseas territory, Anguilla, where police said the wind blew the roofs off buildings and damaged utility poles.

Meanwhile another storm Fiona was foaming towards the Leewards but much further north. It became a storm but following behind the powerful Earl it soon fizzled out of existence. Earl meantime continued up just on the outside the U.S. east coast all the way up towards Halifax, Nova Scotia before it died.
Reports from Antigua, said powerful winds and rain destroyed at least one home and at least eight people had to be evacuated, though there were no reports of critical injuries. Emergency response officials said about 350 people were in shelters. Local weather authorities reported at least 5 inches (13 centimeters) of rain and 10-foot (3-meter) waves.

In St. Maarten, the storm toppled trees and knocked out electricity to much of the island but there were no reports of serious damage. Heavy gusts of wind swirled debris across streets that were empty due to a government-imposed curfew.

Cruise lines diverted ships to other ports in the Caribbean and Mexico as a customary precaution for tropical weather. Antigua’s V.C. Bird International Airport closed, and regional airlines LIAT and WINAIR suspended flights.

Forecasters had said on Monday there is a chance the hurricane could brush the U.S. Mid-Atlantic region toward the end of the week, with its closest approach to North Carolina on Thursday or Friday. In any case, the U.S. East Coast is likely to see pounding surf. It would head in a more northerly direction expecting to brush the northeasterly coast of the U.S.

The clean-up and repairs continued well into the week with Minister of Communications and Works Charles Kirnon throwing out praise to workers and others who moved timely to get things back to near normal.

Leading up to the passage of Earl DMCA director Bennett  Kirwan had warned residents to be cautious and prepare for what appears to be a busy season of storms, especially that there was at least one more storm lining up behind Earl. On Thursday evening following a brief thunder storm he had reported the standby generator on Silver Hills was damaged by the lightning storm and the agency is hoping to have it up and running within a few days.

That had knocked several of the communication systems (including ZJB and PTV) out at least temporarily. It was natural also that the problem of access to the hills was limited by the further damaged road.