Damaged Boerasirie Dam could be repaired in four days
– Agriculture Ministry
Works to repair a damaged section of the Boerasirie Water Conservancy Dam, East Bank Essequibo, could be completed within four days, authorities say.
The dam is the main line of defense between scores of homes and the millions of gallons of water in the conservancy that stretches from West Bank Demerara to Parika, East Bank Essequibo.
Yesterday, officials said that they believe heavy trucks and cars may have contributed to the dam crumbling in a section.
An estimated 200 structures that were illegally constructed on the dam have been removed and punts have been placed strategically to block the entrance.
Yesterday, officials of the Ministry of Agriculture, the Guyana Sugar Corporation and National Drainage and Irrigation Authority visited the conservancy to check on works.
Fortunately, the section of the dam that had slipped was not on the side of the conservancy but on the opposite side where a façade drain is.
Yesterday, an excavator and a hymac were busy building a buttress or “pall-off” to prevent further slippage and reinforce the dam.
According to Minister of Agriculture, Robert Persaud, the repairs could take up to four days and cost around $11M.
He expressed worry that the excessive rainfall could place more pressure on the dam, a situation that is not unusual for other water conservancies across the country.
NDIA and other regional bodies have been mandated to carry out 24 hours monitoring on the dams across the country, but according to the Minister, residents as well have the responsibility to report any problems.
Questioned about accusations that residents had reported problems of the dams to rangers, the Minister did not doubt this and warned that any drainage and irrigation worker found lapsing would be disciplined.
A number of piles were being driven into the ground yesterday as materials were also rushed to the area.
According to Persaud, his ministry and other agencies are standing up and would have made arrangements for such an eventuality.