LIVES SAVED BY THE RAIN

Residents
of Maiden Lane in Kingston Central, who would regularly spend leisure time playing dominoes and doing other activities on the sidewalk in front of the premises at number 49, are lucky to be alive.

A very old, derelict building made of wood, bricks and concrete, came crashing down onto the sidewalk and the residents believe that had it not been raining Thursday evening, lives would have been lost and people left with serious injuries.

It also tore down power and Internet lines.

Verona Brown, who lives at a different address but is always at number 49, said it must have been God that was on their side.

“We play dominoes here suh every evening but God sent the rain. If it wasn’t for the rain a dead body you would come and observe. We use the fridge as a seat and a di rubble lick di fridge off the sidewalk. Because of the rain we did a play dominoes inside that bar but one man weh did a play di box seh di smoking a affect him inna di bar.

“Di rain ease up now so we come out and put down the domino table outside. Di owner fi di bar, fi har husband tell her seh because a di three day rain weh fall, we mustn’t trust here suh… di wall got heavier and could tear down anytime. As we put down the table near the gate right deh suh di place start tear down pon rapid, boodoodoop. We think a gunshot. Everybody start run.

“My friend have a grandniece weh nuh stay inna di yard none at all. A mussi tru di granny did deh deh she couldn’t come out. Maybe you woulda hear seh dat likkle baby dead. We give God thanks and God is good all the time. God seh a nuh suh we fi dead. A Thursday rain save we. Hurricane Ian give us rain Saturday, Sunday and Monday then gave us a little break. It come back Thursday evening,” she said, adding that they wish to see the authorities build proper houses at the location so the residents can benefit.

Donna, who lives at the back of the premises, shared that people who live in the yard would have to walk through the derelict building to access the street. She was happy that no one was hurt, but was perturbed that the Kingston and St Andrew Municipal Corporation (KSAMC) was to demolish the old structure at the front of the premises over a year ago, but failed to do so.

“Last year September, KSAMC come slap a paper pon di building seh dem did ago lick it dung. Eventually it just drop dung. Normally we woulda sidung out yah suh but the rain mek nobody no out yah. This could have hurt somebody. A long time mi a beg dem help. A because a di concrete and it decayed, so water just finished it.

“Anyhow it happened in dry time a whole heap a people woulda get hurt. When out here cool and you deh pon your Internet, more while we out yah lay down pon di fridge and dem sumn deh. Even after this happen, dem nuh come do nothing about it. It look like it wasn’t really on the agenda. Not even the the rubble dem come help clean up.”

People’s National Party caretaker for Kingston Central Imani Duncan-Price, was also not pleased that up to Saturday evening, no one was sent to clear the rubble.

“The thing just came down with a horrific thud, blocking the street. The KSAMC acknowledged that the building was dangerous. Why didn’t they just come back and complete the job?

“I give thanks nobody one was hurt. I am thankful the usual people were not on the sidewalk at the time of the incident.

The street needs to be cleaned and we call on the KSAMC to just complete the job that they saw as important. The building has come down so now clear the significant debris quickly for the people and demolish the two other buildings to the left with a similar problem,” Duncan-Price said.

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