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Editorial: Cyclone season is still here; Let’s not be complacent

Fiji is still very much in the cyclone season and people should not become complacent. A number of residents were caught by surprise from flash flooding, as a result of
22 Jan 2019 09:56
Editorial: Cyclone season is still here; Let’s not be complacent
The landslide at Dilkusha Road.

Fiji is still very much in the cyclone season and people should not become complacent.

A number of residents were caught by surprise from flash flooding, as a result of heavy downpours in the past few days. While it was heartening to see the response units including the Police and National Fire Authority officers’ spring into action to rescue and assist Fijians to evacuate safely where needed, the bigger question is, what went wrong? Why were many of us caught off guard?

The landslide that closed off Princes Road was unavoidable, but what could have been avoided was some of the flash flooding, which was a direct result of clogged drains.

These drains did not clog overnight by themselves. Over the past months, Fiji Sun has been publishing photographs of areas with rubbish strewn around, with rubbish thrown in the drains and rubbish carelessly discarded right next to a rubbish bin.

Where do people think this rubbish ends up? In our drains, in our oceans if it is able to make it that far. But these carelessly discarded rubbish is what contributes also to the continuing flooding in a number of areas.

We cannot afford this. People have had their farms left in ruins, have had water flooding their homes and some serious questions need to be asked.

On that note, the work undertaken to clear the Rakiraki River did not go in vain. Where a moderate downpour could have normally led to the flooding of Rakiraki Town, the town area was spared this time around despite the very heavy rain.

There has been a lot of neglect around the planning of our towns and cities and today we are facing some of its effects as well. While this problem will not be solved overnight, we can certainly do our bit and not contribute to the problem.

Start by being thoughtful about where you are disposing your rubbish. That action will go a long way.

Jyoti Pratibha

Feedbackjyotip@fijisun.com.fj

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