BWA to discuss urgent relief plan for sewage-affected south coast

The board of the state-owned Barbados Water Authority (BWA) is due to give urgent consideration to a set of new proposals designed to bring immediate relief to long-suffering residents and business operators affected by sewage leaks along the south coast.

BWA Rapid Response and Communications Manager Joyann Haigh told Barbados TODAY this morning she expects the board to move quickly on the plans for easing the misery being experienced not only by those living and working in the Worthing and Hastings, Christ Church communities, but persons traversing the area as well.

“We put a couple of proposals to the board [on] the way forward as to how to fix the problem in its entirety. However, we are trying to take some steps right now, which includes taking some of those impacted directly via their internal plumbing . . . to take them offline as a temporary measure in order to give them a little ease until we get the problem resolved,” Haigh said, adding that efforts were also being made to reduce the level of the waste water flowing through the drains.

However, she cautioned that the proposals might not be implementable unless the levels go down.

“Once the levels go down, then we implement the plan. The plan will be shared with the media shortly, as soon as the relevant authorities see [the plan] which is in their hands, then we will be able to move forward from there,” the BWA spokeswoman added.

Haigh said once the go-ahead was given to fix the bigger problem, the public would be informed about the completion time, what the process would entail and what inconveniences, if any, may occur.

She revealed that so far, three customers have been taken off the sewage network, including Kentucky Fried Chicken in Hastings, and Worthing Court Apartments. The BWA official also told Barbados TODAY there were plans to remove the Gentle Breeze Apartment Hotel at Worthing, which has already closed its doors due to constant flooding of premises with the effluent water from the system.

When informed by Barbados TODAY of the closure of the food catering business next to Gentle Breeze, the BWA spokeswoman said she was not aware of that development but promised to have it investigated in order to render any assistance possible.

“I personally am not aware of it . . . but it doesn’t mean our inspectors are not. But I will check with them today pertaining to this catering company and even see if there is anything that we can do directly for them to give them temporary relief,” Haigh promised.

The sewage leaks, which have been ongoing for more than a year, have also forced the closure of the popular Chicken Barn restaurant at Worthing and have caused at least one guest at a nearby Parone Village apartment to pack up and leave. Spokesman for the south coast residents, the community activist Adrian Donavan, also told Barbados TODAY this week that a second guest was on the verge of following suit.

However, while admitting that a resolution to the chronic leaks was taking longer than anticipated, Haigh said the problem was a work in progress and a complex issue.

“We discovered several issues over the past couple of months which obviously were not the same as we had earlier on late in 2016 going on 2017. So we are going to work towards that . . . we do apologize . . . it is regrettable . . . and we do apologize for the inconvenience caused, but the problem is a very complex one and requires a lot of brain power, a lot of resources and a lot of financing,” Haigh said.

In the meantime, ten cases of gastroenteritis were reported at food establishments in the area on Christmas Day.

However, Acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Kenneth George told Barbados TODAY earlier this week that there was so far no medical evidence to suggest that those cases were linked to the sewage problem in the area.

“We have found no bacterial or viral contamination in the establishments across the south coast,” he said explaining that teams from the Ministry of Health had carried out an environmental health assessment of food kitchens in the area.

However, despite the absence of a direct link, Dr George said the ministry had moved to establish several guidelines which the outlets must follow in the preparation, storage and delivery of food on the south coast.

These include regular washing of hands, ensuring hygiene practices were at least at a minimum standard, and reporting all illnesses to the ministry.

He is also urging motorists using the south coast road to slow down in order to avoid splashing pedestrians.

64 Responses to BWA to discuss urgent relief plan for sewage-affected south coast

  1. John Everatt January 6, 2018 at 12:17 am

    So, the BWA is to have more discussions with the board. You have had 2 years to discus this mess and you now want to have more discussions? We don’t need more discussions. We need some action which the BWA and the government seem to find challenging. “Requires a lot of brain power” — yes the BWA has a challenge with that too. Think about it folks, initially we were told by the politicians (Sealy and Boyce) that it was not sewage at all. Then we were told it was broken down pumps. Then we were told it was a breach in the pipe. Then we were told it was the fault of the hotels for fluching rags down the toilet. And all this time the BWA has failed to fix it with all their “brain power” after 2 years. Shameful!!

    • Bajan January 6, 2018 at 11:00 am

      John Everatt well said. I support that comment. I see two major players here. The BWA and Cabinet.

      BWA Role:
      The management of the national sewerage plant has not been able to find a solution for the past few years, why do we expect them to offer any workable ones now the problem has become a national crisis? Should the public be criticized if it appears to them that there are links of incompetency in the ‘sewage management’ chain?

      Cabinet’s Role:
      The people need to know whether the BWA regularly appraised Government, over the years, of the challenges within the national sewerage system, offered solutions, and advised the government on the possible risks and consequences if their recommendations were not implemented and if so, what has been the government’s response to date?

      • John Everatt January 6, 2018 at 1:36 pm

        Bajan – these are indeed valid questions. However as far as cabinet’s role you may be giving too much credit to both the BWA and the cabinet by suggesting that they may have offered solutions and that government would even think of responding even if they did offer solutions. These government corporation management positions are filled with government appointees who obviously lack the skills and ability to do their jobs.

  2. Carl Andrew Williams
    Carl Andrew Williams January 6, 2018 at 12:21 am

    Imagine this shot was going on for a long time and now it at its worst they want to have urgent talks to figure out the problem.

    • harry turnover January 7, 2018 at 7:45 am

      Exactly !! my SAME thoughts when she used the word URGENT.
      How can it be URGENT if it has been going on for TWO YEARS ?
      URGENTt definition, compelling or requiring IMMEDIATE action or attention;

  3. Jackquelynn Jones January 6, 2018 at 2:26 am

    As Director of Gentle Breeze Apartments, please know We Are Not Closed. We have, however, closed one apartment, but the five remaining apartments have had guests and did so through the Christmas. However, there has been a constant backup flowing for three months..settling into neighboring property downhill. Earlier, this week we had one registered guest who chose to leave with the help of a taxi driver who then proceeded to slam us in a public interview. Even with us being removed from the system what about the surrounding businesses? Every business in the area has been affected. We people make false claims they cause injury to others. Unlike other businesses we have tried to guaranty some employment to our employees. There are enough jobless in Barbados! But we have received unnecessary publicity..this time erroneously. We are monitored by health dept. We offer immaculate rooms, but the whole area is suffering, because you cannot bottle up odors. BWA came inspected, nothing done, until now. Removing us off the system seems to be the plan of BWA. I understand they will be doing it systematically. This situation, while not as urgent as recently has been going on for more than three years, probably closer to five.
    I am thankful BWA is finally being proactive. I just wish there had
    been more transparency..hopefully they are on the right road. But I fear they honestly need a new sewer system, and that cannot be done overnight!

  4. Antheia Springer-Williams
    Antheia Springer-Williams January 6, 2018 at 3:08 am

    Investments down the sewer! We need urgently to get this country back on track!

  5. Angela Griffith
    Angela Griffith January 6, 2018 at 4:59 am

    Stop all the long talk

  6. Sherlock Holmes. January 6, 2018 at 5:28 am

    This woman and most of her counterparts are all talk,i get the impression that her eloquence is purely theatrics this crap literally has been going on far too long.

  7. Ali Baba
    Ali Baba January 6, 2018 at 5:39 am

    so what the experts saying that wanna brought in? what no teeth pitbull saying? tell ya no money in the sewer, like building ah new bwa…something so critical left to run 2 years going..stupesss

  8. Ziggy Blessed
    Ziggy Blessed January 6, 2018 at 5:45 am

    Estwick and Lowe i realise wunna gone deaf and dumb all off a sudden….Estwick got all the advice and solutions to the Ministry of Finance & Lowe busy “in other areas” and not a word on this situation that i believe his Ministry should be concern with…..go figure!!!!!

  9. Nigel January 6, 2018 at 6:15 am

    After reading all of these blogs, I haven’t see no one with a solution as yet to the problem.

    Come on Barbadians I’m sure we can do better than that.

  10. Tony Webster January 6, 2018 at 6:48 am

    @ Sherlock: your assessment is not far off the mark. She’s very good as a P.R. “shield”. However, the management and actual delivered efficiency of the B.W.A. is what is at the core of this issue.

  11. Nicholas Mackie
    Nicholas Mackie January 6, 2018 at 8:04 am

    After a year ?

  12. Jerry January 6, 2018 at 8:28 am

    The wrong persons are being blamed. I personally ask the person responsible two years ago in a casual setting if the water in Barbados was still safe because I had to install a water tank pump, 2 filters .After 3 months the filters were clogged and black. His response was that he was being neutered because no money was forthcoming from Finance. We know who controls the money. Money may be the Root of Evil but without money to pay Companies and people the can be no solution to any problem. We need a Public/Private Sector Infastructure Fund . The funds would come by issuing long term bonds . In Ontario sewage charge is added to our water bills.

  13. BIG SKY January 6, 2018 at 9:19 am

    May be the BWA can rent a tent and hold the discussions with the board, in the car park at the closed Chicken Park location in Worthings.

  14. Cherylann Bourne-Hayes
    Cherylann Bourne-Hayes January 6, 2018 at 9:33 am

    The time for discussion, investigating, and planning are all over. It is time to act and start fixing it

    • Rawle Spooner
      Rawle Spooner January 6, 2018 at 10:01 am

      These clowns don’t have any ideas nor plans just stall and talk.

    • Nickk Moore
      Nickk Moore January 6, 2018 at 11:34 am

      Rawle Spooner ….well BWA are open for suggestions. Maybe you can give constructive advice.

    • Rawle Spooner
      Rawle Spooner January 6, 2018 at 12:21 pm

      Nickk Moore They should have been open to suggestions and constructive advice in 2016 when the sewage leak first happen instead of denying there was a problem and doing photo-ops.So in other words the problem should have been fix at that time not allowed to get worse.

      • Alew January 6, 2018 at 2:13 pm

        Well said Rawle Spooner.
        The Freundel Stuart MalAdministration has been practicing the art of sweeping things under the carpet and pulling red herrings across the trail.
        Nobody really knows the depth of incompetence that is rife in that gang of bandits and liars.
        To begin with te margin of victory was too slim for Freundel to carry out any real discipline among his cohorts so he had togo sleep and let them rule the roost. Even now he sleeping and the place smelling of sewerage in the south, and in Parliament nuff hot air.
        In any other country the Minister of Finance would have been sacked but here we allow him to print money and preside over twenty downgrades – lets see if he could make it to twenty one.
        Where is Freundel at this time?
        Is he aware of the trouble we are in?

    • Nickk Moore
      Nickk Moore January 6, 2018 at 12:27 pm


    • Jimmy Douglas
      Jimmy Douglas January 6, 2018 at 9:44 pm

      Nickk Moore – absolutely not. They are the professionals and that is their job. If they are going to need advice from the public maybe they ought to resign – from the Minister down. The public is
      not where advice is found to solve highly technical infrastructural problems.

  15. chris hill January 6, 2018 at 9:34 am

    BWA obviously has a big problem with heavy lifting. here she is giving more reasons for tardiness on the whole situation, after a whole year the BWA has not investigated, or conceptualise the fix. but there is a fix for the BIG ISSUE. where is the money coming from for this new plant and plumbing system. Infra and Infotech will be called in for emergency work with a BOLT plan that will have a never ending figure. Where is the money coming from. Worrel’s statement yesterday clearly shows (finally telling the truth) that the government coffers are significantly reduced and there really is no choice but to layoff 1500 workers per year for 5 years, and an IMF money injection. So where is the money coming from for the new plant. let me tell you where, you pockets, renting a plant from Infra or Innotech, with of course the increased taxation to pay the bill.

  16. Beverly Hackett
    Beverly Hackett January 6, 2018 at 9:34 am

    Build a new one

  17. Gillian Skeete
    Gillian Skeete January 6, 2018 at 9:45 am

    This a joke and not funny talk more talk even more on going talk bs all of this should have been fixed a long time ago!

    • Rawle Spooner
      Rawle Spooner January 6, 2018 at 10:00 am

      This might get fix right before elections I kinda suspect this garbage government playing politics with this sewage leak to score election points not putting nothing pass these dogs.

  18. Sue January 6, 2018 at 9:50 am

    Each time I read news of this mess I just feel sad for Barbados as a country. This sure reads like ineptitude of big proportions.Let me disclose that I am a tourist who loves the country. Where we live just experienced a major winter storm,major! Less than 24 hours later all roads are plowed clear, power is working and it’s business as usual. Sad for you Bim.

  19. Rawle Spooner
    Rawle Spooner January 6, 2018 at 9:57 am

    Frigging amateurs band aid after band aid solutions,as we can see these idiots at BWA don’t have a clue but yet politicians keep letting them make serious life and soon death decisions but then again politicians no better than the sewage flowing on the South Coast.This gine turn into a catrastrophe of deadly porportions mark my words,can these clowns tell us for certain this sewage leak is not entering the main drinking water supply, then again they would lie and say it’s not just like they trying to say the gastro outbreak on the South Coast is not related to the sewage leak.

    • Sharon Woolley
      Sharon Woolley January 6, 2018 at 11:05 am

      Monkeys would work faster and have more brains

    • Santini More
      Santini More January 6, 2018 at 12:39 pm

      Rawle Spooner The engineers of BWA have been highlighting their concerns about the South Coast sewage system for at least 5 years. What do you expect them to do if management and their Minister does nothing to get the funds for them to adequately repair and maintain the system? Let’s apportion blame where it belongs and congratulate the workers at BWA for keeping the system running as long as they did!

    • Rawle Spooner
      Rawle Spooner January 6, 2018 at 1:02 pm

      Santini More Ok guess we should give them big bonuses hell
      no, I’m not impress with BWA one frigging bit.

    • Jada Phenix
      Jada Phenix January 6, 2018 at 3:50 pm

      Scary as hell thinking about it

  20. Sharon Taylor
    Sharon Taylor January 6, 2018 at 9:59 am

    She need to tell the truth…. She gine help d man dat gi she d job lose his seat…. Lmfao!

  21. Hugh J Ferguson
    Hugh J Ferguson January 6, 2018 at 10:02 am

    Need IMMEDIATELY the call for elections…The financial mess is HUMONGOUS…that is why the dancing for the last 18 mos of not replacing the many broken pumps / piping as that pay’t iwould be in HARD currency…Barbados can say the BD dollar is 2 to US 1, but NOBODY wants our currency at that rate…….BIG devaluation coming…Only the disgusting DEMS for ignorant policies & tiefing for past 10 yrs to blame…

  22. Santini More
    Santini More January 6, 2018 at 10:37 am

    This disaster epitomizes the working of this incompetent DLP Government. Instead of taking action at an early stage, they have waited to the system has broken down and reached a crisis point before being forced to do something.

  23. Gail Agard Wallace
    Gail Agard Wallace January 6, 2018 at 10:41 am

    ….. and yet…..another story. Why even talk about it.

  24. Paul Griffin January 6, 2018 at 10:57 am

    the government and the department of Tourism should be aware of the huge amount of negative reactions from potential tourists that this situation is causing, just look at the amount of bad press on trip advisor. Travellers are already cancelling their trips and until the government can reassure everyone, this will impact visitor numbers and revenues of businesses on the South Coast and across the island for some time to come. I love Barbados and feel terrible for all the people who’s businesses and health are being affected by this situation

  25. Ralph W Talma January 6, 2018 at 11:02 am

    As I said before the sewage system in Worthing is the same as that which was in place when my Aunt Babs ran the Rydal Waters Guest House there. Since then, many more Guest Houses, Hotels and fast-food shops have come on stream in the area but without the commensurate increase in sewage capacity. A nuts and bolts reappraisal needs to be carried out most urgently and the Government must allocate the necessary funds for this top-of-the-list project. If that is not done, then expect a dearth of tourists in then area during 2018 and I regret to say the resultant bankruptcies of many businesses.

  26. Alex Alleyne January 6, 2018 at 11:36 am

    My dear Lady, what were you and the board doing from day one when the problem first started ??????.
    The word QUICKLY is no where in the plan, but don’t worry the Law Court will be flooded with most of you real soon to answer charges.

    • Sherlock Holmes. January 6, 2018 at 8:41 pm

      This woman is just talk and maybe that is the only thing she is capable of at the BWA.

  27. Belfast January 6, 2018 at 1:10 pm

    And no mention of the Minister responsible for Water Resources!
    Let’s face it Ms. Haig is a professional squawker, she is only passing on messages from the Engineers and the Board.
    A chain is as strong as its weakest link. BWA is as swift as its doddering Chairman.

  28. archy perch January 6, 2018 at 1:12 pm

    @ Sue.I appreciate you visiting our shores, however, you cannot compare your country which may be Canada or the United States to this little rock. Clearing your streets instanly of snow after a massive snow storm is customary, and there is always money in the budget for such. The sewer/sewage problem in a small section of Barbados is not a regular happening. We do NOT have deep pockets, but we have very good economists, advisors, Prime Ministers, Finance Ministers, yardfowls , yardducks, critics, cry-babies, alarmists, naysayers, opportunists, racists (both black and white),dummies who claim to have common sense, greedy people called share-holders, parasites for businessmen in the private sector, thieves who owe the government over 900-million-dollars in VAT, liars and I could go on. So you have a clear and broad view of politics in Baebados, and it is fierce as is now.

  29. milli watt January 6, 2018 at 1:20 pm

    Joyann leave the system the way it is nuh…….what yuh troublin it fuh stupse. it working well

  30. Kathie Daniel January 6, 2018 at 2:07 pm

    The lot of them should resign, starting with the Minister.

  31. Tony Webster January 6, 2018 at 2:27 pm

    Flush DEM.

  32. PAUL ECKSTEIN January 6, 2018 at 2:58 pm

    So the sewer system on the south coast of BARBADOS has many broken pipes along a very long route where EFFLUENT has been leaking actually POURING into the streets that you drive on and walk on, peddle your bikes on and into your back yards, your super market parking lots, the ocean, etc. and the GOVERNMENT OF BARBADOS has known about this for a very long time and has done NOTHING but TALK about it. Now you have local people and tourists actually getting sick, tourists that are not coming to visit and spend their MONEY WHICH IS WHAT MAKES YOUR BEAUTIFUL ISLAND WORK and NOW LOCAL BUSINESS are CLOSING DOWN and people are actually LOSING their JOBS. So one can only wonder who is in charge there and who is going to turn things around before this HUGE PROBLEM becomes a NIGHTMARE with MAJOR CONSEQUENCES the likes of which would be FAR WORSE than any CLASS 5 HURRICANE.

  33. Lorenzo January 6, 2018 at 3:42 pm

    Milli Watt you think this is some kind of joke,you are a despicable human being.Why don,t you try living in Worthing for a month?Maybe you should be on the south Coast cleaning the sewerage instead of speaking it.

    • MARIA Holder January 6, 2018 at 4:46 pm

      Me thinks Milli is being sarcastic. For those hurting it is insensitive but me thinks she means no harm

      • milli watt January 6, 2018 at 10:36 pm

        me thinks you are correct Maria………..I try not to confuse the peasants with my thoughts but as you can see they can get very excitable lololol

  34. Donild Trimp January 6, 2018 at 4:55 pm

    @ Lorenzo
    Sarcasm from Millie.

  35. Dennis Taitt
    Dennis Taitt January 6, 2018 at 7:47 pm


  36. Neval Greenidge
    Neval Greenidge January 6, 2018 at 9:52 pm

    Tell the powers that be this is not discussion time. Should be completing the action…

  37. luther thorne January 6, 2018 at 10:32 pm

    I think this lady is beginning to BORE people now
    Less of her please !

  38. Arlita Strose
    Arlita Strose January 6, 2018 at 10:58 pm

    Ms.Haigh should be the Boss at the BWA…ALWAYS ON POINT…..

  39. BIG SKY January 7, 2018 at 2:00 am

    BWA Rent A Tent and hold the talks WITH THE BOARD in the car park at the closed CHICKEN BARN location in WORTHINGS.

  40. harry turnover January 7, 2018 at 8:02 am

    Joy Ann Haigh…you CANNOT use the word URGENT in ANYTHING that the BWA does NOW since this has been going on for over TWO YEARS.
    URGENT means IMMEDIATE and that would have meant over TWO YEARS AGO.
    Furthermore if the BWA had moved URGENTLY TWO YEARS ago ,the levels would NOT have been where they are at TODAY and you would not have had to be trying to confuse certain people by saying that the proposals might not be implementable unless the levels go down.
    Now suppose the levels DO NOT GO DOWN ? then I assume that another set of URGENT proposals will be implemented.

  41. Buun January 7, 2018 at 8:26 am

    The minister of heath now sounds like Donville Innis.

  42. Jonah Banks January 7, 2018 at 9:42 am

    The BWA is a disgrace!

  43. B. Smith January 7, 2018 at 10:16 am

    As a long time visitor to the island, I am afraid that these issues will impact your tourism industry. Last June I stayed in Christ Church and spent 4 days without any water in the hotel. It was like camping but it cost $300 per day. This sewage problem may be what puts travellers over the edge in terms of choosing another island. If raw sewage is flowing out of your plumbing system, you can no longer trust the water coming out of the tap. You may not realize all of the choices Canadians have in terms of all of the islands to pick for a holiday. People always ask me why I keep returning to Barbados – i love it, but it’s getting harder to defend. I hope Barbados gets its act together!

  44. Lorenzo January 7, 2018 at 11:16 am

    Milli Watt you are a J/A,who should be living on the South Coast,then you would not have time to be a Dem apologist moron.Based on past comments from you you are always looking for excuses and blaming others for the incompetence of thsis Government.

  45. Dan January 29, 2018 at 6:42 am

    From the perspective of a tourist … We have been staying in Worthing the past week. It is a great location, except that we have witnessed – visual and smell – the sewage backup problem multiple times in the streets. We have had no problems in the apartment we are renting, but we did not trust the tap water – so we bought bottled water all week. Had I known about the sewage problem, I would NOT have booked our stay in this part of Barbados. And, as we share our experience with friends and on sites like TripAdvisor, we will warn people to avoid this area until the problem is resolved.


Leave a Reply to Santini More Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *