NEWS

Damaged Irish Crossing Leaves Residents Stranded

“All the community members here contributed $1000 again and we tried to do a temporary access so we hired one digger and before that I already asked for assistance from FSC and the Government; I already emailed a letter of concern.”
10 Feb 2022 10:57
Damaged Irish Crossing Leaves Residents Stranded
Deo Karan road committee president Aman Ravi Chandra (front,), Ashok Kumar and Jai Chand manage to cross the Deo Karan Road Irish crossing in Paipai ,Lautoka after flood waters receded on February 9, 2022. Photo: Salote Qalubau

Deo Karan Road Committee president, Aman Ravi Chandra, said about 70 residents were unable to cross the Deo Karan Irish crossing in Paipai Settlement, Lautoka. This restricts them from travelling to the main road, despite assembling boulders for a temporary crossing.

This was after half of the temporary crossing was swept away during Tropical Cyclone Cody.

He said the Deo Karan Road was a cane access path built in 2019 by Ba-based company, Divine Construction, and funded by the Fiji Sugar Corporation for over $40,000 after the previous bridge was washed away in 2012.

“This the only crossing for our community members, who can’t transport their crops and vegetables. Children as well as workers cross this bridge; so, what will happen now?” he asked.

“It takes 45 minutes to go from here to the main road and we cannot go to the shop now.”

He said after a flood in 2020, community members noticed the bridge started to weaken.

“First of all, we saw the top of the bridge started to crack, then we were a bit worried and started to complain to the Advisory Counsellor and he relayed the message to the divisional authorities and FSC,” he said.

“All the community members here contributed $1000 again and we tried to do a temporary access so we hired one digger and before that I already asked for assistance from FSC and the Government; I already emailed a letter of concern.”

He said a few farmers in the area wanted to assist with building the bridge, but were advised not to by the workers from the Divine Construction company due to Occupational Health and Safety concerns.

“We won’t be able to repair now because the cost will be higher, but in total we have repaired the bridge three times and spent amount $3000 from our pocket from the 11 farmers,” he said

“Now that the cost will be high, I have written a letter to the authorities and they are responding to the emails so we will just wait and see what happens because at the moment I am a school teacher, the students are here, the workers are here, they can only cross when the water is fine.”

The Fiji Sugar Corporation is currently compiling a report regarding the matter.

Feedbacksalote.qalubau@fijisun.com.fj

 

 



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