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Nov 3, 2022

Devastation in Southside Belize City Caused by Hurricane Lisa

Residents of south side Belize City are among the most affected by Hurricane Lisa. Today, residents from Freetown, Lake Independence, and Port Loyola were out picking up the pieces in an attempt to return to some sense of normalcy. Roofs and zincs were tossed in all directions. Trees and branches littered roadways. Power lines prevented access to several streets, while some homes were completely destroyed with everything inside. Many Belize City residents had to make a last-minute dash to safety. News Five’s Paul Lopez was on the ground today. He tells us more.


Paul Lopez, Reporting

Families in the Port Loyola area of Belize City were severely impacted by the strong winds and heavy rains that Hurricane Lisa brought ashore.


Cynthia Anderson, Port Loyola Resident

Cynthia Anderson

“The experience was very terrifying because this weather came up on us unexpected; never even give us chance to try bring down stuff. Everything get wet up up deh, bed and everything. From my bed get wet up.”


Cynthia Anderson is the matriarch of her family home on Freedom Street. She, along with her daughters and grand children, twelve of them combined, were forced to hunker down inside a small wooden structure on the property after her daughter’s second floor home collapsed.


Cynthia Anderson

“When deh feel the house the shake suh the hurry run down with the baby my grandson that is ten months old, run down with he and thing and start to scramble lee thing and bring down. The first half ah the house gone. Weh actually happen the sink blow off my grandson roof first. Then the wind pick up the half of the top and gone with that and afterwards the next half gone, and after that everything start to shatter apart.”


Anderson’s daughter and three of her grandchildren, including a ten month old child evacuated the upper flat in the midst of the roaring winds and heavy rainfall.


Cynthia Anderson

“I am not working again. My boss just died on the fifteenth. I don’t have a job as yet. So, no money fih replace nothing dig. I nuh know how we wah recover mussy by grace of god. I nuh know if anybody woulda help me or anything. I would a really appreciate help from anybody weh could help yo know.”


It is hard to tell at this point, but this rubble of wood and zinc was once a two-story structure on Central American Boulevard. The home held historic value for this area as it is said to be the second house constructed on Central American Boulevard in the late 1970’s. Lisa’s wrath decimated the building, marking the end of an era for one family.


Mark Anthony, Port Loyola Resident

Mark Anthony

“This house literally the yah from over like forty to fifty years. I born and grow yah. My first step everything dah right yah and ih gone just like that.”


Anthony and his family members were out today salvaging what remained of the home. His grandmother resided here and now has to relocate. Anthony’s cousins were sheltering inside the house before it collapsed. They fled to safety when the house began to shake excessively.


Voice of: Joshua Anthony, Port Loyola Resident

“When we sih the house start to shake and thing dah then we decide fih come out. We watch it drop because we mih deh pan the street. We mih eena a vehicle deh. And we sih the whole thing just drop, gone. Haad breeze, I the jump and the breeze like ih wah back me weh and all, yeah.”


Mark Anthony

“Same way to we just the try sih what all we the try pull out ah this rubble and mek ah start. When the house mih the up we ask fih help from side, red side, blue side, and nobody come sih wih. Nobody not even lend we wah lee helping hand. Deh nuh have to pay we fih knock ah lee board, we just the ask fih a lee help and thing. This dah weh ih come to.”


Gigi Bowen and her children had to quickly evacuate their Unity Street residence, as winds began to rattle their zinc roof. Lives could have been lost if her family chose to remain inside the house any longer, because the relentless winds ripped off an entire external wall moments after they sought refuge in a neighboring home.


Gigi Bowen, Unity Street Resident

Gigi Bowen

“I nuh really sure dah weh time, I think dah like four, because the winds pick up and the back part of the house done mih the flap. So, when we feel the front part start to shake I tell the kids we have to come out and mek we guh down stairs dah mih sister house suh that wih be safe. So we just pack up weh wih mih could pack up. I never really store up anything. I had a water proof bag weh I put the social, passports, important papers for medication, in water proof bag. 56

Across the neighborhood, many residents were attempting to either repair their homes or salvage what remains. They all plead for assistance, many saying that they do not have the necessary finance to rebuild and get their lives back to a place of normalcy.”


Reporting for News Five, I am Paul Lopez.


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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