Restoration will be  long process – Myers
January 7, 2014
Restoration will be long process – Myers

The current focus of the Roads, Buildings and General Services Authority (BRAGSA) is to bring the communication network, roads and bridges back to a state of normalcy, following the flood disaster on December 24 and 25, 2013.{{more}}

This was highlighted yesterday by the chief executive officer, Deidre Myers, during a press briefing at BRAGSA.

Myers noted that a system is in place which made it easy to mobilize BRAGSA workers, once calls began to come in during the flooding.

“It’s going to be a long process because the disaster impacted St Vincent and the Grenadines significantly,” she said.

“BRAGSA operates as the first responders in the event of a natural disaster, with respect to regaining access as far as our roads are concerned.”

The CEO said that at the time of the disaster, heavy equipment contractors were called upon to respond in areas that needed help in relation to landslides and road blockages.

While noting the significant damage to infrastructure, Myers said BRAGSA’s biggest challenge is to deal with the rivers, which have tripled in size.

“Our next big challenge is the rivers, because a lot of them have changed their normal course as we know it. In some cases, the rivers are like three times their original size,” she said.

She added that in the case where the bridge was significantly damaged in Caratal, only very light vehicles are allowed to cross, using that route.

BRAGSA only began restoration work in the Cane Grove and Buccament area yesterday.

The CEO explained that this was because the area had been under the control of the Royal St Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force, as the search for missing persons was still being carried out.

Myers stated BRAGSA will continue to do their general clean up before moving on to the interior of the island where most agricultural roads lie.

“It’s going to be a long process and we will, from time to time, ask the public to bear with us. It’s not going to be a quick fix by any means,” she said.

In addition, Myers noted that “the exercise of determining the cost of the impact is being done by the Ministry of Works, in terms of the replacement of infrastructure that has been damaged.

“It’s not BRAGSA’s role at this point…to start putting figures to what has happened and of course the assessment is ongoing. There are still lots of areas that we have not seen,” she said.(BK)