But the early morning tragedy has also raised the ire of many Crooked Tree residents. This stems from the conditions of the causeway and the conditions in which villagers have had to commute to and from the village for over three months. Among those who responded to the accident were the politicians and Belize Rural North Area Representative Edmund Castro was among that part of the crowd. The blame for this morning’s tragedy was placed squarely on Belize Rural North Area Representative Edmund Castro and the government by villagers. The causeway has been in need of repair for several years.
The water still sits on a section of the causeway. The deepest point is presently seventeen inches and from the villagers’ calculations, this is receding about one inch per day. However, villagers clamour that they have repeatedly asked for the repairs to be done.It seems now that following this morning’s incident those works will now be forthcoming at a faster pace.
Edmund Castro – Area Representative
"Ministry of Works’ engineers will come out here and do the assessment to make sure that we don't have any gap in the approach for the bridge; the two bridges on the cause-way and then see how soon we could get commuting of the bigger busses to go back and forth and move people. However we still have approximately some 15-17 inches on water on the cross-way so it is almost impossible for us and it wouldn’t be wise for us to try to dump material on the cross way at this time in water."
But the accusations also lean on what villagers say is an unfortunate reality in Belize – it takes a tragedy to prompt government into action.
Edmund Castro – Area Representative
“Throughout this country who wants to be reasonable that the government of Belize or the Area Representative never send the rain, we have been experiencing the rain since august of last year that fall in this area and even when it is not raining, the Crooked Tree lagoon serves as a basin for the rest of the country basically and so even when it rains out west water still have to pass through the Crooked Tree basin to the sea so it is quite unfair for people to be balking the government of Belize or myself for the flood situation that we are having at this time. Let me say this that this is not the first time that we experiencing top gallon flood in this area and with government constrains and budgeting we still started to work on the cross way, the areas that we were able to complete was completely out of water, so we know exactly the amount of material and amount of work that needs to get done for the Crooked Tree cross way nothing happens overnight and we will continue to do our best to raise the cross way as soon as the rain recede and it is workable by the recommendation of the ministry of works.”
The fact remains, however - a life has been lost and villagers can only keep hoping their situation will be remedied.
Steve Anthony Perriott
“We hope that this will make the government officials realize that the money that it costs to send Coast Guard and all the aid that we get they would take that money and just raise the road, we need the road to be raise, if that would happen, we need a better bridge structure, if those things would happen we done need the Coast Guards to come.”
In addition to rehabilitating the causeway, Castro says he has spoken with the Prime Minister and government will be rendering assistance to the grieving family and those injured in the incident.
The Belize Coast Guard will remain in operation at the village until the water fully recedes from the causeway and there is surety that their services will no longer be needed.
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