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Nov 9, 2020

Devastation in Roaring Creek Village

In the aftermath of one the most severe flooding, residents in Roaring Creek are heading back home to pick up the pieces. Damages to homes, household items and those sustained by businesses are running high and it will take some time to rebuild. The water rose so high, it reached the approach of the new bridge, the old one was totally submerged. Residents were forced to higher ground as the river overflowed.  Here is News Five Duane Moody.


Duane Moody, Reporting

The devastation from the outer bands of Eta was widely felt – primarily along central and southern Belize.  In the village of Roaring Creek where a number of properties rest alongside a waterway, flood waters rose to unprecedented levels; the old bridge was complete submerged by water and access to the west was blocked off.  As many as ten families within an area right of the new bridge had to be evacuated by Zenaida Cruz and her family via a dorey – now dubbed the lion of the creek.


Shermie Nunez, Resident, Roaring Creek Village

“I panicked and I prayed, but the way the water was rising so fast, I got worried. And we stayed in the house, but we didn’t sleep. We actually stood up for two nights without sleep monitoring this water because it as something weird. My mom said since 1978, we didn’t have a flood like this. We didn’t expect the water to reach my sister’s house that is over that side and it reached and we had to be evacuated after two.  My mom is a strong woman and she was the one that assisted everyone in my neighbourhood; I would say like ten families in my neighbourhood, she helped them to evacuate—and this was after hours, anytime—she was willing in that same canoe there over that side. She assisted them and up to now, they told us that NEMO will come and help us evacuate. We haven’t seen any NEMO, no chairman, no area representative.”


Today, most residents were finally able to make their way back to their houses. It was an emotional moment for most – their life’s work had been destroyed. While the structure remained intact, their household items were missing, others damaged by the flood waters, which in its wake, left behind a pungent sludge. Shermie Nunez and her family were cleaning up and trying to salvage what they could.


Shermie Nunez

Shermie Nunez

“The downstairs was completely under water, everything got wet. As you can see, these things that are outside – the mattress, Shenell’s stuff got wet—the baby toys and stuff and the vacuum, karaoke machine. But like I said, these are material things and we just had to move quickly. We are happy that we have our lives because material stuff are not important, we can get back those, but a life, we cannot get back. We won’t be having electricity for a while because the transformer is still under water so the B.E.L. people said we won’t be getting electricity anytime soon so we are just cleaning up for now.”


In the Another World area of the village, Nadira Casey and her family lost all their household items to the flood. Casey and her family monitored the water level up until wee hours of Friday, before they made the decision to evacuate to higher ground. Her entire house was submerged; today they stripped away doors and took out the furniture, but will they be able to save anything?


Nadira Casey

Nadira Casey, Resident, Roaring Creek Village

“I packed my stuff ina boxes and I put them over yah, but when I see the water reach to the piece to come into my house, that’s when I said, it is time to start move the stuff. Good thing I have good neighbours. My neighbours dehn see we with the lights and they start to help. She and dehn lee bwai come and start to help; my bwai still ina shock and he noh move nothing. Dah me and the kids. I neva believe the water mi wah come so far. I grab some clothes fi di kids, some clothes fi di bwai dehn and we move di stuff. Every time I di go and ker wah load, I notice di water di come further and further and when it reach to a level weh we can’t come in back, so that’s when we said, whatever else lef in; we had to lef everything.  We lost majority of everything; we noh lef with no doors. All our doors messed up, our stove, our refridge, the mattress; the clothes weh lef – no sheet, no nothing. We lost most of everything.”


Shelly Griffith is a resident of Belmopan, who is house-sitting for a friend, who lives in the U.S.  Tens of thousands of dollars in electronic devices and household items, including major whites, are damaged. While Griffith accepts that the disaster could not have been prevented, she is thankful that no lives were lost.


Shelly Griffith

Shelly Griffith, Resident, Belmopan

“The Good Lord doesn’t give us more than we can handle and he knows best. Yes we have lost several stuff, my friend. It does cost, but we can get it back eventually. So we have a couple of guys helping us in the house; they have come in handy, helping me power wash and we have gotten the major water out that was in the house. So now it is to get the laundry the clothes dry and get some other stuff cleaned out. The water just rushed up; we have experienced water like this before—well she has and I have seen it, but it never came this high as how it was. It was usually just to the back of the fence because the creek runs to the back. But in just an instant, just a blink of an eye the water came rising and before we could see, it was already covered in the house.”


The residents are asking for assistance to recover some of what was lost as a result of the flooding.


Nadira Casey

“We just have to take it one day at a time and just I noh know.”


Duane Moody

“Support needed? You have help? You want help?”


Nadira Casey

“We have some friends that put out stuff out there, but we noh have the time to ask anybody for help. But we have friends and stuff, but we will see what. If anybody want help.”


Shermie Nunez

“Our family dah hard working people and if that is what we gotta do cause if you can’t depend on people – imagine if dehn didn’t come with day five and the water was really high and we didn’t see any I would say important people because to us they are important. And in a time like this, they should have at least showed up—not because we want anything from them, but just the moral support to know that someone cares.”


Duane Moody for News Five.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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