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Queen’s Drive family homeless after house breaks apart

Queen’s Drive family homeless after house breaks apart


The cycle of landslides and the collapse of retaining walls and houses that tends to accompany the rainy season has begun and the Gill family of Queen’s Drive has already experienced what being ambushed by the elements feels like.

Last Saturday night, a tropical wave dumped heavy showers on St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG), causing landslides throughout the island and leaving the Gills without a place to call home.

According to Noel Gill, he was at home with his family of eight on Saturday night, when around 12 midnight, the children’s bedroom and the house’s only bathroom broke off and sent a few pieces of debris over an embankment into a neighbour’s yard.{{more}}

“There was a lot of rain, so it underwash the house; water went into the foundation, so it break away,” explained Gill, who noted that they had an idea that the rooms might collapse, so they had already moved the children out of their bedroom.

“When we hear the noise like a cracking, we started to get the children in a next room and get ready to move out,” said Noel, who added that the room had shown signs of cracking before.

“I could not sleep for the rest of the night, but we stayed in the other part of house until morning,” said Noel, who has since relocated his family. He said that he has been promised assistance by the Government, as the family was visited on Sunday by Howie Prince of the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) and West St George area representative Cecil McKie.

“If anybody been in them rooms, that would have been a bad experience, so we thank God nobody was in there. The heavy rain had a lot to do with what happen and if rains keep coming, it can underwash more,” said Noel, who added that they are waiting on the relevant authorities for help.

“We don’t mind assistance from anyone; once they can help, we will be grateful, because we would like to get it fix so we can move back in,” stated Noel.

Prudence Gill, Noel’s wife, said that she stood in an area of the bathroom and saw it break away. She described that experience as “scary” and is thanking God that no one was hurt. She revealed that she has lived in that area for 20 years and has never witnessed anything like this.

Also, at Campden Park on Sunday, a retaining wall collapsed and blocked a section of the road leading into Kingstown. The blockage caused a slowdown of traffic in the area between Club 24/7 and the junction that leads into the Campden Park Industrial Estate.

The 2016 Atlantic hurricane season officially began on June 1, 2016, and will end on November 30, 2016. (LC)