Swimming in filth – Trench Town residents concerned about their health

Trench Town residents concerned about their health

Several residents of Collie Smith Drive in Trench Town, Kingston, say they have had to contend with sewage water in their yards for years.

The residents said that the water, which seeps through manholes to settle on the surface of the ground, has been making their lives miserable.

They say to get in and out of their homes, they have to carefully navigate through the yard, skipping over the murky water to avoid getting their shoes dirty or, at worse, fall into it.

One resident, Kerri-ann Howell, said it is the mercy of God that prevents the people living in the yard from getting ill.

“It come in like say the wall a hide wah gwaan inside,” said Howell.

Despite making numerous appeal, for help in the past, the residents say that they have gotten little assistance that temporarily remedy the problem.

Compounding the problem, they say that inside the houses, toilets regularly malfunction and at times when some persons on higher floors flush, the waste falls to the floor below.

“Sometime me deh ya a wash and me just here it a bubble up and go ‘eeerrr’! Like when somebody tek deep breath and a it come up,” Howell said.

Daphnie Myles says she had a niece that died from typhoid fever 23 years ago, which she claims to be as result of getting sick from the sewage water.

“At the time when she dead, she did young. She woulda inna a har twenties now. A nuh just now we a go through this. After she dead, dem come and wash out the place, and that’s it,” Myles told THE STAR.

The residents say they are willing to assist in remedying the problem, but without the necessary resources needed to fix the problem, they are calling on the authorities.




“We just a beg them fi change out the piping system, put in fresh piping so the raw sewage thing kinda hold down, and just mek we get back likkle water inna the building them,” Howell told THE STAR.

Aspiring Member of Parliament Mark Golding says the authorities have done some work to remedy the problem.

“Sewage and sewage disposal, that is an issue. The National Water Commission has been working in the constituency to clean the sewers and actually allocated all their assets in the corporate area to South St Andrew to do that cleaning exercise,” he said.

However, Golding believes that a public education programme is needed to ensure that persons don’t carry out activities that could lead to the blockage of the sewer system.


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