Not an easy road

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Residents of St Sylvan’s Road, St Joseph are crying out for help from Government, as they continue to put up with bad road conditions and a lack of regular running water in the rural district.

It was in late January 2018 that a section of the road collapsed into a nearby gully.

The area, which is popularly known as Dark Hole, is a main artery connecting St Joseph and St Andrew.

However, residents told Barbados TODAY this afternoon that since the road buckled over a year ago nothing has happened since then.

Residents of St Sylvan’s Road, St Joseph

Sylvan’s Road connects motorists to Bruce Vale in St Andrew the north and Parks Road to the south, all located in the vulnerable Scotland District area.

Rawle Knight, who said he was born and raised in the community, explained all he needed was for the authorities to move with haste to bring a solution.

“We need the road,” he pleaded.

“They are really delaying repairing the road. It has been too long. People are suffering. I would like them to pay some attention to [the area]. It is out of service for so long.  The bus cannot really come down here now because of the breakage,” he complained.

Rawle Knight

Close to where the road collapsed is a track used by residents to get in and out of the area to the north.

However, with mounting worries about the Melvin’s Hill Bridge in the other direction, residents said they fear they could soon be trapped.

Insisting that the bridge was weakening, one resident who did not want to be identified said even if government was unable to fix it “they could come and drop some material and level it out”.

“That was the same problem down there [where the road collapsed]. You used to have to go down there leaning and eventually it had a burst pipe under it and that was that,” he recalled.

“They are not coming to fix it in no hurry so come and level it out. Save it,” he said.

One man explained that in order to get public transportation residents had to walk close to a mile to a section of Parks Road in order to get the bus going either to Chalky Mount or Bridgetown.

“The road out there is so bad going Chalky Mount it is not easy on the vehicle. The Melvin’s Bridge is so bad it is a time bomb,” he added.

Just last week, Prime Minister Mia Mottley gave the assurance that residents of the Scotland District area would get some help.

She said government officials were in the process of working out the details.

“I am in discussions now with the Ministry of Economic Affairs and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to discuss with the Chinese government how they can work with us to stabilize the Scotland District and to allow us to be able to deal with something as simple as the roads,” Mottley said at a post-Cabinet media briefing last Thursday.

But damaged roads are not the only concern for residents. They are also complaining about the lack of regular running tap water.

“The water goes off everyday,” one resident declared.

“It has been going on for months,” he added.

However, they said the garbage collection was good since it was being done at least once a week.

In relation to the water woes, Knight said: “Sometimes we see a tank. Some days the water does be off a whole day and you don’t even see a tank. Not that the tanks don’t come but not every day, and that is not good enough.”

“It rough! It rough! I hope that we don’t get blocked in right now because if the bridge collapses we are in trouble,” he declared.

The residents who spoke with Barbados TODAY complained that it was a struggle for them to carry out daily chores such as cooking and washing.

They complained that the situation has left them extremely uncomfortable and they were especially concerned for the elderly and the children in the area of just over 30 households.

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Not an easy road - Barbados Today

Not an easy road  Barbados TodayResidents of St Sylvan's Road, St Joseph are crying out for help from Government, as they continue to put up with bad road conditions and a lack of regular ...