Temporary doors in place at smashed De Willem sluice

One of the two temporary sluice doors that were installed to prevent flooding

Two temporary koker doors have been put in place to prevent flooding from occurring at De Willem, West Coast Demerara and the surrounding villages after strong Atlantic Ocean currents ripped apart the permanent structure on Wednesday.

The temporary doors were installed last night when the tides dropped, Yudhistir Mana, Manager of GuySuCo’s Utivlugt estate said.

He told Stabroek News in a telephone interview yesterday that they are currently making preparations to replace the broken door. The estate manager added that they also have to carry out corrective works on the grooves of the sluice. “The corporation engineers were here today (yesterday) and did their assessment so we are preparing to start working on that tomorrow (today),” Mana said.

Part of the sluice door that collapsed on Wednesday was removed and placed in a corner.

He said that the temporary doors are working and have been able to keep waters levels from rising despite some intrusion.

On Wednesday when Stabroek News visited the area, hundreds of residents from the surrounding villages were gathered at the scene, as thousands of gallons of water gushed in from the Atlantic Ocean.

Mana explained that since the sluice is situated in “the mid of the Atlantic Ocean, and there are no barriers, so, it felt the full brunt of the water pressure because everything is pretty new”.

The said sluice door was refurbished only last week.

Stabroek News had reported that despite the sluice gate being broken around 5:00 pm, by 7:00 pm, one hydraulic lighting tower, two tractors, wood and other equipment were already in place for the construction and installation of the substitute door.

Representatives from the Ministry of Public Infrastructure’s River and Sea Defence Department and the Regional Democratic Council, along with other engineers were working at full steam to rectify the situation.

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