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Paul Nicome, 73, right, and his son Richardo Nicome clean the drain outside their home at Los Bojos Village, Erin yesterday.

Sascha Wilson

Recent widespread flooding in Los Bajos, Palo Seco has caused distress to several families, including 73-year-old pensioner Paul Nicome who has decided to do something about it.

Nicome, with the assistance of his son Ricardo, grabbed their tools, donned their boots and began cleaning silt and slush from a drain that runs along the Erin Road in front of his house.

As this was not the first time he has undertaken this task, Nicome estimated that it would take about two days for them to clean about 100 metres.

He said the community would usually flood after heavy rains.

“After the flood and the water go back down a lot of water does remain in the drain which does encourage a lot of mosquitoes and once the water stagnant and not flowing they going to breed and plus this is a flat area we living in so the cesspit tank is get affected by the water not flowing which mean it does start to back up.”

Also, he says if the water is unable to flow then the embankment will eventually start to erode.

“This is the main road and this water being here cause saturation and the earth supporting the road will eventually start to come down.”

Nicome recalled an area along the road began to slope because the water in the drain was stagnant and not flowing. Asked why he did not go to the authorities tasked with the responsibility for cleaning the drains for their assistance, he said, “I went to them once, Works Department then they send me to another place in Penal and they came once and clean the drain. They ain’t clean it as good as I clean it too. I realise look let me not waste my time and I let me do it myself.”

He said another issue is that when it floods caimans invade his property. “I saw one on the garden just outside the fence by the window there. It had a time it had one in the area where I have my dogs by the fence there.”

Stating that the government should have a programme in place for regular cleaning of drains and rivers, Nicome was certain that this would not be the last time he would be undertaking this task.