PUBLIC Utilities Minister Marvin Gonzales said some 200,000 people in parts of North Trinidad had their water schedule interrupted with the recent passage of a storm near Trinidad, but WASA has significantly restored supply by repairing about half of the affected water treatment plants. He was addressing Thursday’s post-Cabinet briefing at the Diplomatic Centre, St Ann’s.
Gonzales said the plants were fed by surface water that would have been affected by conditions during the storm’s passage.
By Wednesday, about 28 water treatment plants were out of operation, leaving about 200,000 people with their water schedule being severely impacted.
He said WASA staff had worked through Wednesday night, such that by 11 am on Thursday, some 15 out of the 28 plants had been brought back fully into operation.
“I’m advised that at about 6 pm this evening, all of the water treatment plants will be operational with the exception of two plants – at Matura and Tompire – because of the adverse weather condition in the Matura area. The river conditions, I’m told, it is very unsafe.
“We expect that with the improved weather conditions that around midnight those two plants serving the Toco area will be brought back into full operation.”
Gonzales hailed WASA’s hard-working employees, managers and board. TTEC had responded to all disruptions, he said, while TSTT reported no disruption in its service.
Meanwhile WASA had targeted truck-borne water to public buildings such as hospitals and schools, Gonzales said.
Minister of Works and Transport Rohan Sinanan said his ministry had cleared landslips in the Toco area and was committed to addressing further landslips and any future flooding.
He said the main challenges were the North Post Road and Paria Main Road.” He was glad all roads were now clear, such that someone could now reach Matelot, either by one-lane or two-lanes.
Sinanan said the ministry expected more landslips in coming days, as the earth there was saturated.
He promised local residents to continue to stage equipment in the area.
“Yesterday (Wednesday) unfortunately that downpour and the landslip came late in the day and the two rivers actually crossed the roadway. It was a bit dangerous to access the landslips then but we started at about four o’clock this morning.” He said debris was removed.
“The last report I got about ten minutes ago is that they are actually clearing the last landslip into Matelot. They have already cleared one lane, so that entire roadway has been cleared.”
Sinanan said the ministry was also monitoring flooding and he was glad to report all the ministry’s pumps were working, without incident. He thanked all MOWT staff for coming out, including some workers who had not slept on Wednesday night. Sinanan vowed to continue the ministry’s momentum through the hurricane season.