Water tanks filthy, say residents

The proposed improvements to the water supply in St Joseph can’t come soon enough for residents of Airy Hill, who complain that the temporary measures are unsatisfactory.

Acting General Manager of the Barbados Water Authority (BWA) Dr John Mwansa announced today that the authority had begun work on a system which would bring an end to the frequent water outages in the district.

He also admitted that water tanks placed in affected districts were for temporary relief, telling journalists that the best way to solve the perennial problem was to have water running through the mains.

However, residents have said they were worried that they could become ill from using water from those tanks, which they contended were surrounded by filth.

Renee Springer-Maynard pointing to the settling  water by a tank in Airy  Hill St Joseph.
Renee Springer-Maynard pointing to the settling water by a tank in Airy Hill St Joseph.

“It is filled with mud, it’s filled with debris, grass; it looks like somewhere that animals could go, not human beings,” complained Renee Springer-Maynard, who has lived in Airy Hill for 20 years.

Springer-Maynard said she was shocked that residents were expected to use water from these tanks.

“We are expected to go there to collect water to bring back to our homes to drink, to cook with, to bathe with and to deal with our children.”

Even when water flows through the pipes it is unhygienic, claimed a furious Springer-Maynard, who described what happened when her husband turned on the tap on Christmas Eve.

“Christmas Eve. . . when my husband caught the water in a container, the water was as brown . . . it looked like water that came from sewage. It didn’t look like water that comes from a reservoir and it had a smell, a pungent odour,” she told Barbados TODAY.

“You got to run it off because you can’t drink it, you can’t trust it . . . . We don’t know if the water is safe to drink, we do not know if some person from the [BWA] or health comes and tests the water to make sure and ensure that it is of good quality.”

 Another resident who identified herself only as Mrs Maynard complained about the scheduling of water trucks, adding, “this is the 21st century and we’re going backwards”.

7 Responses to Water tanks filthy, say residents

  1. jrsmith December 31, 2015 at 7:30 am


  2. Sue Donym December 31, 2015 at 10:43 am

    A truly sorry state of affairs.

    The people responsible should be working all out to find and implement a solution. So hard to believe that this is Barbados, which used to thought of as one of the leaders in the Caribbean – in infrastructure, education, housing.

    Engineers aplenty- civil, mechanical, structural; and if BWA is lacking, can’t anyone authorise the assembly of a consultant team to make water flow consistently in St, Joseph. Can it be true that noone there is serious about the health and well being of all Barbadians?

    If I had a vote, I would forego the daily reminders that Barbados will reach 50 years of independence in 2016 – and all the ceremonies and pageantry that will accompany it – in favour of having the effort and money directed to a solution for these Barbadians. We will no doubt be inviting and feting ambassadors and dignitaries to show them how far we’ve come but I would be much more proud if we could agree to host them in St. Joseph. Or invite the next set of frequently returning visitors to party in one of the problem areas. That should get things fixed.

    Hate to end on a negative note, but please don’t allow the area to become a litter zone in the meantime

  3. Candice Elenor
    Candice Elenor December 31, 2015 at 11:36 am


  4. Ralph Talma December 31, 2015 at 12:56 pm

    1. You are 95% correct @ Sue Donym. What a sad state of affairs to end 2015! I cannot believe such important infrastructure across the Island continues to be allowed to deteriorate so disastrously. Here I am reading Harold Hoyte Esq excellent book and thinking how sad his ‘Political Warriors’ must feel that their once happy, peaceful and prosperous island is no longer such.
    2. But, surely the Government will come to the rescue and allocate its scarce resources where there are so desperately needed.
    3. Nevertheless, happy New Year Barbados and all the very best for 2016. I feel we are going to need the blessings of the great ones.

    • Sue Donym December 31, 2015 at 1:07 pm

      Appreciate your comments. Very best wishes to you and yours for 2016. Happy New Year, Barbados!

  5. Veroniva Boyce
    Veroniva Boyce December 31, 2015 at 1:37 pm

    ‘Water tanks filthy’ a major health issue, and DEM got the nerve to launch 50th Independence 6 January 2016. DEMs just don’t care as long as the NO Water Bills are paid and the Bottle Water is purchased. Not everyone can afford to pay for both. Over taxing the citizens ain’t good enough, turn off the water leaving them to walk the green mile and dehydrate. This nonsense have been going on for too long. In Plenty and in Time of need? Independent? I beg to differ.

  6. jrsmith December 31, 2015 at 1:53 pm

    What a lovely sight, to take your mind of the water problem,
    Renee-Springer. Happy new year to her and all my Bajan people.


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