Thursday, February 22, 2018

Rough seas damage boats, houses in Tobago

A number of boats, shore lines of some residents’ houses and swimming pools, along with personal property, were damaged across Tobago, including Mt St George, Black Rock, Grange and Parlatuvier.

While at least three boats were destroyed in the Old Grange Mt Irvine areas, in Parlatuvier a number of boats over turned and are now nonfunctional.

Aldz Daniel a fisherman for the past 15 years told the Express:

“On Monday at 3.20 a.m. I received a phone call from a friend to come to the jetty. When I arrived my two boats were overturned and we had to wait until later the morning to start clean-up efforts.

“Other boats overturned in the area. Part of the jetty is in the water and the other side is in the water,” Daniel said.

Daniel called on the Fisheries Division and Tobago Emergency Management Agency (TEMA) to help fishermen.

“There are no lights on the jetty as this fixture was also damaged during the bad weather. We need help since no one can access the jetty without current or water. We need help now,” Daniel said.

According to Rough Seas Bulletin Number 3 issued by the Meteorological Service of Trinidad and Tobago, sea conditions in Tobago remain hazardous. Beaches along the west and north coast are seeing northerly swells reaching up to 3.0 metres.

When contacted TEMA director Allan Stewart said 14 cases of marine vessels across Tobago as well as one damaged residential sea wall in Black Rock were reported.

‘These conditions are expected to persist for the next six to nine hours and then gradually return to normalcy.

“The Trinidad and Tobago Fire Services has cleared the roadways along Grange Bay and Mt Irvine beach of rocks and other debris, harvested by the large swells,” Stewart said.

Stewart said all marine interests including small craft operators and sea bathers are asked to exercise extreme caution as these conditions pose a direct threat to life and property.

TEMA is advising all marine interests to be vigilant and to adhere to the closure of these beaches until deemed safe again by the relevant authorities.