Damaged Crossing Worries Farmers

The initial crossing was damaged when Tropical Cyclone Cody struck earlier this year.
10 Jun 2022 12:21
Damaged Crossing Worries Farmers
Members of Deo Karan Road committee at the damaged crossing

Sugarcane farmers of Paipai Settlement, Lautoka expressed their need for the repair of the damaged Deo Karan Irish crossing which connects the cane access road from the settlement to the main road.

The initial crossing was damaged when Tropical Cyclone Cody struck earlier this year.

Deo Karan Road committee President and sugarcane farmer, Ami Chand, said this troubled all of the nine farmers residing in Paipai because the harvesting season was due to start on June 16 and most were worried about how they would transport the sugarcane from their farms to the Lautoka Sugar Mill.

“We were told a temporary pass would be put here, they will use the culvert for the time being and when the funds come then they will build a permanent one,” he said.

He said community members had safety concerns as a temporary crossing had to be made by community members earlier this year to enable their children to attend school.

“Our children had to use the temporary crossing we made with wood but what if one of them had fallen and drowned when the water level rises and being sugarcane farmers, this is our livelihood being cut off with the damaged crossing,” he said.

“All the nine farmers went on Tuesday and were told that FSC would put the culvert here next week. They didn’t give a day but they said they would do it next week.”

He said the overall amount of sugarcane harvested by all the nine farmers was over 1000 tonnes each year.

“There are about 3 to 4 cane lorries that transport cane across from Paipai to the mill so the repairing of the crossing is very important and we are just waiting for the crossing to be repaired,” he said.

The Ministry of Sugar Director Operations Sugar, Sanjay Kumar, confirmed that repair works for the crossing would be underway shortly.

“It will start soon and we have informed them that we have to assess it first and it’s not the only crossing that is damaged,” he said.




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