GEORGETOWN, Guyana, December 23, 2016 (CMC) – Heavy rains have caused widespread flooding here, today, with the Ministry of Public Infrastructure stating that it is working to provide relief to affected areas across the country.
The Hydromet office said that about 40mm or 1.57 inches of rainfall was expected and Public Infrastructure Minister, David Patterson, has led a team of engineers and ministry officials to examine the drainage pumps in the city.
“The first issue here is that we are in a high tide, the spring tide season, which means that we have a shortened window for when we discharge through the kokers. Unfortunately, as we speak, the kokers are closed and are only doing mechanical pumping. So the first order is to ensure that all the pumps are running and operational at full capacity,” Patterson said.
He said teams have been dispatched to various areas of the city to determine what needs to be done to bring relief to affected areas.
“It is unfortunate the rains will continue for today and maybe tomorrow, so we’re preparing ourselves for any eventualities,” he said, noting that sand bags were being stockpiled.
“We’re making sure that everything is in place, that the tides recede, the kokers will be open today, around 15:00hrs, so we’ll discharge the waters as much as possible for the next four hours, other than that I’ll just ask persons to be safe.”
He said when the koker doors are closed, the pumps will continue operations to ensure the water drains off quickly.
The rains have put a damper on the preparation for the Christmas Day holiday with many consumers being unable to do their shopping.