The Director of the National Office of Disaster Services (NODS) is expressing concern about the level of preparedness on Barbuda, 14 days into the 2018 hurricane season.
Philmore Mullin said there is still quite a lot of work to be done in terms of clean-up efforts. He noted that while the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA) has removed a considerable amount of debris from Codrington, there is a need for more manpower.
“The Barbudans now need to mobilise themselves and get the rest of the cleaning done. The amount of debris on the ground is of significant concern and that is an issue that is under discussion for an immediate solution, hopefully, before we go too far into the season,” Mullin said.
The Antigua Public Utilities Authority (APUA) has already restored water and electricity to some homes and as the NODS official explains, all customers will have to re-register for utility services.
“At first, that process was moving very slowly. However, one of our donor partners said they have some money to assist residents — once their homes have been renovated — to engage the services of some engineers, to check the rewiring of the homes so that APUA could reconnect sooner,” Mullin said.
The NODS official also said that this, too, may pose a challenge due to the general practice of some Barbudans to plaster electric wires into the wall during the construction phase, which he said, must be discontinued.