Photo Credit: Clifton Skelton/BVI Platinum News
Hon. Mark Vanterpool, Minister for Communications and Works has admitted that residents will have to bear with officials as they continue to work on measures to tackle the Territory-wide water shortage. He said the issue cannot be addressed overnight.
"I want to acknowledge that there are very serious water shortages throughout the Territory and our team is working very hard to correct that. I am not going to promise that it will happen overnight; we have a plan which we are working on," the Minister stated last evening, February 13 during a community meeting held at the East End/Long Look community centre.
He was at the time responding to a concerned resident who raised the water issue facing residents in the Ridge Road area. However, Minister Vanterpool said that should be addressed within a week.
The Minister also disclosed that a new motor has been purchased for the Baugher's Bay desalination plant after it went down earlier this month.
"Yesterday morning we were able to get one of the motors that was broken down at the Baugher's Bay plant back up. A new one was bought urgently and was replaced at the Baugher's Bay plant and its back in action. Hopefully during this week, we are hoping to refill the reservoir at Fort Hill and then move the water up to the Sabbath Hill reservoir to be able to provide more water on the Ridge Road. So hopefully we can get back on track in the next couple of days, by the end of this week, by providing more water," he explained.
However, the Works Minister cautioned, "It's not going to be on a daily basis as yet, because what we are trying to do is get the production of water at Baugher's Bay plant at a higher level over the next several months so that we can be able to fill the reservoirs more consistently, to provide water throughout the Territory on this side, especially the town areas, up in the hills, Cane Garden Bay and so on."
He added, "So, I believe you will see improvements in the next week or so and hopefully in the next several months we can have a more consistent water supply in that area."
In a statement on February 5, the Ministry of Communications and Works stated that the Baugher's Bay plant was functioning at half capacity, producing approximately 400,000 imperial gallons of water per day after experiencing mechanical difficulties with one of its motors.
According to the Ministry, the problem which occurred on Friday, February 1 caused the Water and Sewerage Department to implement a water rationing schedule.
"As the Ministry, Water and Sewerage and Sage Holdings Limited continue to work to restore the plant to its full capacity, affected persons are asked to store and conserve water and to fill adequate containers to meet the needs of the household," the Ministry stated on February 5.
The Ministry had also issued a water rationing schedule.