Vocal residents of Adventure, Corentyne were able to prevent a contractor from removing truckloads of soil from the earthen embankment along the outfall channel on Tuesday.
The residents became concerned because the embankment was already in a delicate state and the workers claimed that they had gotten permission for the removal.
They contacted a member of the Alliance For Change, Michael Hackett of Rose Hall who in turn informed Regional Chairman, David Armogan what was taking place.
Hackett said when he got to the area around 9:30 am “a regional official was already there. Then he [official] left saying the regional engineer would be coming to advise what’s to be done.”
He pointed out that “about an hour later a large vehicle pulled up and the driver spoke to the loader operator. The vehicle left and the loader began filling the truck which then drove away.
He said when he left at about 11 am, “the loader had just finished filling a truck with earth already dug out.”
Hackett also made a report to the Sea Defence Board and was told that only the board can give permission for material to be removed and that according to the Sea Defences Act, such action is an offence.
He noted that the embankment was built about two years ago to prevent overtopping during the spring tide.
He lamented: “That particular embankment is already in a fragile state and to remove more earth is adding insult to injury.”
According to him, “in the afternoon when I called residents, they said the removal is now taking place further out closer to the shore.”
However, when contacted, Armogan told this newspaper that the contractor was not removing dirt close to the shore but was in fact clearing the outfall.
He confirmed that he sent the engineer to investigate and ordered that the removal be stopped.
He said the contractor claimed that he had to remove the earth for the machine to pass and was planning to fill back the spot.
Armogan said the residents were also concerned that the contractor was selling the dirt but when he investigated, that was not the case.