Catastrophic floods caused as a result of an isolated thunderstorm swept through parts of north west Trinidad yesterday, leaving many still counting their losses and assessing damage to their properties.
Swollen rivers and water courses burst their banks, pouring into streets and swallowing vehicles in its path.
Among the areas impacted were Diego Martin, Maraval, St Ann’s, Cascade, Long Circular Road, Saddle Road, Fairways, Champs Elyees, Duncan, Nelson Streets, South Quay, areas along the Western Main Road as well as parts of Santa Cruz.
Dramatic videos of vehicles being swept away and crashing into one another by raging floodwaters in St Ann’s were shared on social media.
Reports also indicate that at least two vehicles washed into the St Ann’s River.
Guardian Media Ltd was informed that trucks and backhoes from both the Diego Martin Regional Corporation and San Juan Laventille Regional Corporation were dispatched to assist in clean-up efforts as well as clear debris from roadways.
Rural Development and Local Government Minister Kazim Hosein said the heavy rainfall also brought down rubble from mountains in the surrounding areas.
He said given the extensive scope of work to restore affected communities, all regional corporations will come together to offer their services and resources.
“We out there in full force, all corporations across the country, the 14 corporations have come together to assist the corporations, Port of Spain, Diego Martin and San Juan.”
Work Minister Rohan Sinanan said despite all efforts to ensure water courses were cleaned in time for the rainy season, yesterday’s downpour was overwhelming.
“What we got down in the Maraval, Cascade and St Ann’s area was a significant downpour and if you look just by the East Dry river, 100 meters from there is sunshine while the river toppling on the highway. So you have this strange weather pattern we have been seeing for the last couple of years,” he said.
Up until 7. 30 last night National Security Minister Fitzgerald Hinds, Port- of- Spain mayor Joel Martinez and councillor for the Southern Port- of- Spain District Dennis Bristol were still touring areas that remained inundated.
According to Bristol, residents reported that two people were swept away in the East Dry River and had remained unaccounted for.
He said, “It is understood that two people who were in the river were washed away when the water came down, we are still trying to find out who they were, they have not been recovered to my knowledge yet.”
Hinds assured that the claim would be investigated, he also said law enforcement would be out in their numbers to ensure clean-up efforts were completed without any obstruction.
“The police service came out at the earliest opportunity to ensure there was no predation by those who would take the opportunity to do so.”
Port- of- Spain South MP Keith Scotland described yesterday’s flooding as an “eye opener” as he waded through flood waters near City Gate.
He said, “We are working to see if we can get the area cleaned up, obviously here is a hub and it is quite an event, it is a deluge and it seems to have affected this area and others.”