Sharpesdale family feels unsafe in their house
October 18, 2016
Sharpesdale family feels unsafe in their house

A Sharpesdale family is calling for someone to take responsibility for a wall that fell on and damaged their house during the passing of Tropical Storm Matthew three weeks ago.

Romalda Ferdinand says her family now feels unsafe in their house that was tilted forward when their neighbour’s concrete wall fell on it.{{more}}

When she spoke to SEARCHLIGHT last week, Romalda stated that the wall and wooden house is damaged and the owner of the wall, who is also her neighbour, said the damaged house is not his fault, but he would deal with the wall.

“He’s not even acknowledging the fact that the house was damaged; he didn’t even come to see the house and the extent of the damage that was made to the house,” Ferdinand stressed.

During the interview, she expressed devastation and frustration, adding that she is worried about sleeping in a house that is partially cracked and leaning forward.

“It’s unstable, unsafe,” she added.

“There’s buckets inside where the roof is damaged to collect water; if it rains heavily, it’s like the house is flooding, the board detached from the concrete structure.”

A concerned Ferdinand said that her family has contacted the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) and was informed that someone would be sent; however, the organization could not say when that would happen.

She recalled going to NEMO’s office to show pictures depicting the extent of the damage to their home and was told it was something very serious and referred to the Roads, Buildings and General Services Authority (BRAGSA) who told her they do not deal with private property, only damage to roads and so, she was sent back to NEMO.

Ferdinand said the wall fell again around midday last Wednesday and when NEMO was contacted, they gave the same response; they did not know when someone would be sent.

Ferdinand, Versil Ferdinand (her mom), her nephew and her three-year-old daughter are all residents of the damaged house.

She said the wall fell 17 years ago and was simply rebuilt.

Ferdinand said on October 11, persons attached to the Planning Division assessed the wall and came to the conclusion that the wall was not safe.

“They came to the conclusion that the wall had no foundation, it had no steel and it had no column and it has no weep holes… So what Planning is claiming is the water seeped into the wall and cause it to break out because it has no foundation on the side,” she said.

Last week, Ferdinand strongly asserted that she wants someone to take responsibility for the wall and the damage to her house.

SEARCHLIGHT contacted Ferdinand yesterday for an update on the situation and we were told that last Friday and Saturday, her neighbour had workers moving the wall, but at a slow pace.

Up to press time, Ferdinand indicated that the roof of her home is still leaking. (AS)