M&CC cuts down hazardous trees in East La Penitence
…four days after child’s death
Four days after heavy winds caused a tree to crash down on a house and kill a five-year-old girl, workers from the Mayor and City Council yesterday removed other trees in the area which pose a threat to residents.
Tammica Hackett, of Freeman Street, East La Penitence, was pronounced dead on arrival at the Georgetown Hospital, sometime after 01:00h on Sunday. The child attended the East La Penitence Primary School.
When Kaieteur News arrived at the scene workers were busy working on three remaining trees which they believed could be of danger to residents living in adjacent lots.
Ron Eastman, an engineer from the City Engineer’s Officer, told Kaieteur News that the workers were clearing out the trees in the area, including the one that killed the child.
Eastman further revealed that they have viewed other trees in the area, and once they pose a threat, they will be removed.
Questioned about the likelihood of residents being relocated from the area, Eastman said that he would not be able to speak about that since he did not know what the council would do.
Kaieteur News was further told that the Mayor and City Council would always undertake to trimming of trees. However, Eastman asserted that during the “wet season” trees would fall because of the sodden soil as well as the fact that many are at the end of their lifespan. He insisted that there is a programme the council has, that deals with this.
He also highlighted the fact that the council is constrained in terms of resources, but still stretches the available resources to service the city’s needs.
Meanwhile, Tammica Hackett, is expected to be buried today.
Early Sunday morning relatives recounted that it was around 01:00h when they heard the sound of a heavy wind. Seconds later a loud crashing sound was heard, and the occupants in the house where the child resided, began screaming.
After the tree fell, screams were heard coming from the house.
Neighbours immediately rushed out to render assistance and rescuers quickly pulled the two youngest children—a one-year-old named Julius, and three-year-old Richie, out of the house. The eldest child, seven-year-old Kelly Ann Hope, was pulled from the rubble with the assistance of an aunt.
Neighbours kept calling for Tammica but got no response. The child’s mother Tammica Hope watched helplessly as persons tried to find the little girl. Eventually, one of the neighbours shifted a sheet of zinc and found Tammica lying motionless, pinned by the tree.
It took the neighbours about five minutes to free her but by then it was too late.
The child’s father, Junior Hackett, who received a large laceration to his shoulder, said that he had informed the City Council about the tree on several occasions.