Laing Avenue family forced out of home after roof repairs lead to flooding

Members of a Laing Avenue family were forced to find alternative living arrangements yesterday after their home was flooded when a sudden shower of rain disrupted roof repairs being done by their neighbour upstairs.

A distraught Sharon Harding, 49, told Stabroek News that every single item in her home was soaked as a result. She was even more troubled by what she described as the uncaring behaviour of her neighbour, whom she identified as Ken Redmond, when she approached him about the situation.

Sharon Harding stands in the water which settled at one of the bedroom doors.
Sharon Harding stands in the water which settled at one of the bedroom doors.

Harding, who occupies the lower flat of a “scheme house” located at the corner of Laing Avenue and Hunter Street, told Stabroek News that workers were hired by her upstairs neighbour to do some general repairs, which included the replacement of the entire roof. She said that a few days ago the roof was removed.

She said that as a result of the removal of the roof, the entire top flat was left open to the elements. She said that Redmond, who along with his family moved some time back, informed her that he would be doing some general repairs to his home but she never expected that the entire roof would have been removed without immediate attempts to replace it.

She said that she left her children at home with her daughter’s father and went out around 7am yesterday. When she returned in the afternoon, she never expected the scene that greeted her. “I am so hurt I am afraid to cry… all the beds soak, the chairs, the children’s school things soak up. It is a disaster,” she said.

Harding added that the entire ceiling was soaked as were all her appliances, her television set and a desktop computer.

She said she started trying to bail out the water but realised that it was pointless as the ceiling was still dripping. Harding said that her seven-year-old daughter tried using a fan to dry her bed but to no avail. She said that when the rain came and the water started dripping into the house, efforts were made to cover things but it was no use as all they had were pieces of cloth and no plastic. “In meh kitchen, all in meh pot the water come down…my children had to stop eating because water get all in their food,” she related.

“This is just inhumane. You have no consideration for other people,” she said angrily before stating that she was making alternative arrangement for the children but she would have to remain there to safeguard her belongings.

She questioned what assistance would be given to her by her neighbour as her ceiling was damaged and many of her possessions are now ruined. “I know you does do it piece piece. Nobody don’t tek off a whole roof one time…and the thing is you ain’t occupying no upstairs and downstairs; is other people living downstairs,” she said.

The woman said that she is now afraid to even turn on the lights or plug in anything.

According to Harding, when she arrived home she met Redmond but he was far from sympathetic and left a short while later with the promise that he would come back to talk to her.

Redmond, when approached by Stabroek News, appeared upset that Harding had called the press. “It did not call for all that,” he said, while adding that he would speak to her about the situation. He then left and went into his home.

During the time that this newspaper was there, the water was still dripping from the ceiling and the water in some parts of the house was shin high. Work was still being done on the roof.

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