Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 12th 2013 Contents A6
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Diego Martin West MP Dr Amery
Browne is calling on the relevant
government agencies to make more
"intelligent use" of the dry season.
Browne spoke to the T&T
Guardian yesterday on the anniver-
sary of the Diego Martin floods
which claimed two lives and caused
nearly $100 million in damage.
Browne said since last year s dis-
aster he has been writing to the Min-
istry of Works and Infrastructure,
the Ministry of Water Resources and
the Diego Martin Regional Corpo-
ration about the need for remedial
work, cleaning of watercourses and
erection of retaining walls. He said
he also raised the issue in Parliament
but the Government has "completely
ignored" the issue.
On Saturday, Diego Martin resi-
dents were alarmed by flash flooding
in the Crystal Stream and Chuma
Monka areas. Browne said Saturday s
flooding was a warning sign.
Reports that the corporation had
cleaned most of the watercourses in
the area were "false" according to
Browne. He added that officials too
quickly lay blame on residents.
"Every time we have floods, you
have government spokespersons
speaking out and blaming people for
improper dumping of garbage. Yes,
that is certainly a factor and heavy
rainfall is an act of God and not of
man. But when these watercourses
are left in the state of neglect that
we are seeing right now, it is obvious
that whatever rubbish is present will
be trapped in the drains and cause
a complete obstruction. That is not
just the fault of the residents. There
are aspects of flood control within
the power of the Government," he
However, Diego Martin Regional
Corporation disaster co-ordinator
Jerry David said dumping is a major
factor in the flooding issue. David
also cited deforestation and
unplanned development as other
issues which have contributed to
He said flooding was normal, but
last year s flooding was exacerbated
by the unusual heavy rainfall and
aforementioned contributing factors.
David said if there is a similar
amount of rainfall to last year s in
the area, he is certain the problem
would be of the same magnitude.
Since last year s disaster, David
said the corporation has carried out
training programmes for first respon-
ders and distributed sandbags and
first aid kits. The last of these pro-
grammes was held last Saturday and
another programme is scheduled for
this Saturday, he said.
Browne said he has been keeping
in close communication with many
of the hard-working members of the
corporation, but believes too much
focus is put on response as opposed
to alleviation and prevention.
He described last year s floods as
"one of the worst natural disasters
in our nation s history" and "heart-
breaking." He added that there are
many residents still in need of assis-
The Perseids is one of the better
meteor showers for the year---and
it is under way, astronomer Dr
Shirin Haque said.
The meteor shower was expected
to begin early this morning and
will last for two days. Viewers
should see up to 100 meteors per
"There should still be shooting
stars to enjoy. However, remember
you need dark sites for optimum
viewing conditions," Dr Haque said.
The best viewing time is from
midnight to 1 am looking in the
north-easterly direction. No equip-
ment is needed, just comfortable
reclining chairs or mats to lie on
to look upwards and get counting.
The Perseids are known for pro-
ducing particularly bright meteors
known as "fireballs," which are as
a result of slightly larger particles
coming down to about 20 km off
the Earth s surface.
A police constable is to appear
before a Port-of-Spain magis-
trate today charged with stealing
a $120,000 car from the Morvant
Police Station and selling it to a
The 35-year-old policeman, of
Malabar, Arima, was arrested by
officers of the T&T Police Service
Professional Standards Bureau last
Thursday after the owner of the
vehicle reported that his car was
stolen in Curepe.
The car was later recovered by
police and impounded at the
police station where the officer
was assigned as a detective.
When the owner went to the
station earlier to retrieve the car,
officers discovered that it was
An investigation was done by
Sgt Bryon Daniel, Sgt Seepersad,
Cpl Joefield and Cpl Simon of
the Professional Standards
Bureau and it was discovered
that the car had been sold to a
Central businessman for
$40,000 on August 2.
The constable, who has 15 years
service, was later arrested.
Director of Public Prosecutions
Roger Gaspard gave instructions
for the policeman to be charged
for misbehaviour in public office
and perverting the course of pub-
Diego Martin one year after floods...
Browne: Watercourses neglected
FLASHBACK: Flood waters at La Horquette Road, Glencoe, at Gittensdale Junction where a portion of the roadway
washed away, cutting off residents of Upper La Horquette Road for several days. PHOTO: KRISTIAN DE SILVA
Special two-day treat for stargazers
Cop charged with stealing car
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