Residents of Icacos Village, Cedros, were sent scampering for safety yesterday morning after a whirlwind destroyed a woman’s house and ripped off the roof of another house.
Fortunately, neither Indra Rampersad, 45, who is deaf and mute, nor her neighbour Sherwin Moreau, a fisherman, were hurt.
Rampersad, however, is now homeless and Moreau’s home is without a roof.
Resident Ancel Lemessy who witnessed the scary ordeal said it was the first time they had ever experienced such an occurrence.
“We observed the rain start to fall and we get some high winds. Within those winds we saw something we like to call a water spout from the ocean. From the edge of the shore it left the water and it jumped and came across here. It passed by Mr Sherwin Moreau house and sent his whole roof, across into the neighbour side, and it came across here to Indra house.”
He said the wind lifted her entire house. Indra was on her bed when her entire house was removed from her.
During the ordeal, a piece of wood struck her on her face and her house was smashed into pieces.
He continued, “It was really terrifying this morning. People took cover underneath their engine carts, people started to run because we could not explain what was taking place. It is the first time we have seen a water spout leave the ocean and come onto the land. We accustom seeing water spouts in the sea.”
Rampersad’s ex-husband Ralph Gobin, 62, recalled that he was terrified when he saw Rampersad’s house off the ground. Rampersad, who receives a disability grant, has nine children but none of them live with her. Moreau recalled that he was awakened by gusty winds and noises.
“While I lying on the bed I see my whole roof come off and start spinning in the air, making circles in the air, other things I had in the house start flying behind the roof. I get real frighten so I tell my self I dead. I have to say thank God I am still alive today.”
Moreau, who was bitten on his leg by a blackhead shark while fishing five weeks ago, said he does not have the finances to fix his roof, especially as he has been unable to work due to his injury. With no other place to stay, Moreau said he was given a tarpaulin to cover the top of his house.
“I hope and pray no strong breeze come again,” he lamented. They are both appealing for assistance from the government and members of the public.
Cedros councillor Shankar Teelucksingh, who gave the residents food hampers, promised that his office will also try to provide them with materials to rebuild their home. In addition, he said the Disaster Management Unit at Siparia Regional Corporation will give them a letter to take to the various ministries for assistance.