I wrote some notes while listening to the Voluntary PR for WASCO (our water company), Clinton Reynolds talking on Helen FM this morning.
The challenge for WASCO is that many of their facilities for water collection and distribution have largely been buried under layers of mud - they cannot assess damage without first, in many cases making an access to the sites, and then digging the facilities out of the mud.
Despite this, they are making serious headway with restoring water services with many of the smaller sites being worked on. The main reservoir - the Roseau Dam, well they managed to power partly up with generators, but these can only test two pumps at a time - this testing has started - but the site is under alot of silt that must be cleared. Good news is the Dam is not damaged - only a retaining wall broke and that does not affect the integrity of the dam.
Still, even when they've finished testing the pumps, they will only be able to run two at a time - this means that much less water than full capacity - 1/3 - can be sent to Ciceron for treatment and distribution into the pipes.
Mr Reynolds would not be drawn into making any estimates as to how long full restoration would take.
In the meantime, Sandals Grande, which has a de-sal plant, has been providing water to it's other hotels and to the hospital - perhaps more areas too, I'm not sure. The Cruise industry is also helping:
CRUISE LINES HELP SAINT LUCIA GET BACK ON TRACK, REPORTS PRIME MINISTER
Source: Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA); Government of Canada
Date: 05 Nov 2010
Ottawa, Ontario―The Honourable Peter Kent, Minister of State of Foreign Affairs, on behalf of Beverley J. Oda, Minister of International Cooperation, today announced support in response to the humanitarian needs arising from Hurricane Tomas in the Caribbean.
"We want to ensure that the needs of the people affected by Hurricane Tomas are met quickly," said Minister Kent. "This contribution will ensure that the affected families can receive the emergency support they need."
Canada's contribution of $50,000 will help the International Federation of the Red Cross in its goal of assisting up to 1,550 families affected by the hurricane in Saint Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and Barbados. It will provide essential non-food items, including shelter, and ensure that the affected families have access to adequate water and sanitization facilities. Canada is also participating in the Rapid Needs Assessment Team led by the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency through the provision of a water specialist from Ottawa who arrived in Saint Lucia on Wednesday.
In 2007, CIDA contributed $20 million to launch the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF). In light of the damages caused by Hurricane Tomas, the CCRIF will provide US$3.2 million to Saint Lucia, US$8.5 million to Barbados, and US$1.1 million to St. Vincent. CIDA also funds the Caribbean Disaster Risk Management Program (CDRMP), a $20-million program that aims to reduce the risk of natural disasters in the Caribbean region. In addition, through the Canada Fund, a small local fund of up to $130,000 will be made available for community level recovery projects.And here's a link to a CTV article: Toronto Emergency Crew Heading to St. Lucia
Keep tuned - more updates later tonight or early tomorrow