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Family Escapes Raging Floodwaters

Family Escapes Raging Floodwaters
Right: Sanjay Kumar and Ranjana Devi show the devastation caused by floodwaters. Photo: Peni Komaisavai
April 03
10:56 2018

Mother-of-two Ranjana Devi says she and her family are just happy to be alive.

This she said after miraculously surviving what seemed like a natu­ral death trap for her and her fam­ily.

Her family had been awoken be­tween 6am and 6.30am on Sunday after heavy rainfall caused flooding that overwhelmed Ba residents.

Ms Devi her husband, Sanjay Kumar; and sons, Devan Kelu and Veron Kelu, were lucky to be alive after they were trapped in their five-bedroom family home at Vatu­laulau, in Ba, over the weekend.

“At one point it was me and my younger son Veron trapped in one room,” Ms Devi said.

“My husband and elder son Devan were trapped in the other room.”

She described the terrifying or­deal they went through as a family after being woken by floodwaters rushing into their house without warning.

“It all happened so quickly,’’ Ms Devi said.

The Kumar family sitting on what is left of their five-bedroom home in Ba, (from left), Devan Kelu, Sanjay Kumar, Ranjana Devi and Veron Kelu, yesterday. Photo: Peni Komaisavai

The Kumar family sitting on what is left of their five-bedroom home in Ba, (from left), Devan Kelu, Sanjay Kumar,Ranjana Devi and Veron Kelu, yesterday. Photo: Peni Komaisavai

“The waters did not follow the usual route but broke its banks.’’

She said the floodwaters came sweeping through carrying with it trees, mud and other debris and smashing into their house.

“As the water rose, we knew we could have all died and what made it worse was the fact that we were separated and locked in different rooms,” Ms Devi said.

“If we were all together then it would have been OK,” Mr Kumar said.

“We could have died together.”

Miraculously, her two sons helped them break out.

The younger son Veron kicked open the window setting him and his mother free, while his older brother smashed open the grille door, freeing him and his father.

“My sons were so brave and we want to thank all our families and friends who helped in rescuing us,” Mr Kumar said.

“From here, we will rebuild and start all over.

“We have lost everything in this flood.”

Mr Kumar and Ms Devi estimated that they may have lost well over F$100,000 worth of furniture, appli­ances and other valuable items.

Edited by George Kulamaiwasa


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