CONTRACTORS WORKING along the Richland Park road have come under heavy criticism yet again, this time from a family who narrowly escaped serious injury from exposed steel in front of their property.
On Saturday, February 17, around 3:00 p.m.Nadia Paul said she was making her way into the yard of her brother, Dannol Charles, when she jumped over an open trench that has been excavated as part of the work to expand the road.
Paul fell in and her leg was injured by the steel. She alerted her younger brother, Donroy Paul, and he went to help her get out of the trench.
“She was crossing to come over to her brother’s yard to do some work and she fell and the steel that there dig way her foot. I am the one who come help her ‘cause the steel almost damage her whole foot,” Donroy told the SEARCHLIGHT team.
They were able to clean up the blood from the wound and since then, Nadia has had swelling to the damaged foot and challenges walking. Dannol told SEARCHLIGHT he believes his sister could have been seriously injured by the steel.
“This could’ve been worse because trying to jump over those steel and you slip those steel will bore you. It is really a hazard,” he said.
The siblings who live on opposite sides of the Hopewell Road said they are upset with the slow pace of the work. Dannol said while he was peeved about not having access to his driveway, the injury his sister sustained has compounded his frustrations.
“I am very disgruntled and unhappy with the way things have been going in regards to the road.What got me upset is that they dug out in front of my yard and they didn’t even put a piece of board to walk over on. And this is a driveway that vehicles come into everyday.”
He added that there is a mechanic who lives on the property who has had his livelihood affected by the lack of access into the yard.
“The people who usually come here to get the servicing done can’t come here and that is affecting his income… the economy is hard, people are trying to survive and you just come and cut down a man breadfruit tree. It seems as though we are going backward instead of forward,” Dannol complained.
The siblings said they have been hearing the numerous complaints from other residents in the area who sustained property damage as a result of the road work and now they too are in that affected group.
“I don’t know what the authorities are doing in regards to these contractors… I wish I could say that it would be done tomorrow but it seems like next year again that we looking at,” an irate Dannol told SEARCHLIGHT.
He explained that the work started a few months ago on the northern side of the property where he allotted the contractors 500 square feet of his property to expand the road.
Dannol said it appears that the work is being done “all over the place” with repeated delays.Work on trench in front of Charles’ property started last Wednesday, February 14 and the siblings said since then no work has been done to complete it.
Donroy told SEARCHLIGHT he was one of the workmen contracted to do work on the Richland Park road last year but challenges with securing pay forced him to leave the job in late 2022.
SEARCHLIGHT understands that the Kuwait Dynamics Limited (KDL), a company which signed a contract with the government to rehabilitate roads across the island, including in the Marriaqua constituency, is responsible for the road work being done on the Hopewell Road.
In a recent interview with SEARCHLIGHT regarding damage to a property in Hopewell, Parliamentary Representative for Marriaqua, Minister of Health, St. Clair Prince revealed that the company had cited “cash flow” problems as the reason for the frequent stoppages to the work in the area. Minister Prince also said that the contractors had informed him that work would resume soon.
SEARCHLIGHT was unable to reach KDL for a comment on the issues affecting the Charles family.