Tent collapses on government ministers, media

News


Guests, media and government officals scatter as a tent collapses at the re-opening of the Jennifer Shaw Transitional Home for Young Women, Henry Street, Port of Spain on Tuesday. – ROGER JACOB

Government ministers, specially invited guests, and members of the media were almost the victims of a mishap during the ceremony for the opening of the Salvation Army’s Josephine Shaw Home for Women when the tent it was being held under collapsed under the weight of rainwater.

The ceremony was held under two large tents set up between the outer wall of the building and the wall fronting the road at the corner of Oxford and Henry Streets, Port of Spain. Rain began to fall heavily approximately halfway through the ceremony. The sides of the tents closest to the new building began to bulge with the weight of water, causing concern among those sitting on that side, including media whose cameras were set up close to the back of the tent.

Newsday understands that the guttering of the building was not able to divert all the water running off the roof, causing the water to run straight onto the tent and pool there. In addition, the centre pole of the tent was not anchored to the ground. Two men were observed using buckets to bail water off the top of the tent. Shortly afterwards it was noted that the tent poles were beginning to bend, and most people moved out of the tent, including government ministers and employees seated at the front.

Guests, media and government officals scatter as a tent collapses at the re-opening of the Jennifer Shaw Transitional Home for Young Women, Henry Street, Port of Spain on Tuesday. – ROGER JACOB

It was during the feature address given by National Security Minister Fitzgerald Hinds that the centre pole of the structure gave way with a sharp crack. Hinds was giving his speech up to a few moments before the collapse of the tent, having restarted at least once while people were evacuating the structure.

No-one was injured in the collapse of the tent and the event carried on with the cutting of the ribbon of the newly refurbished transition home.

Back To Top