TORRENTIAL rains swept across Trinidad on Thursday night, causing flash floods, and damaging the roofs of some homes during a time of the year where there are usually dry river courses and bush fires.
The rains are expected to continue into the weekend, because it is part of a global weather phenomenon know as La Nina, weather experts said.
The strong winds that accompanied the rain showers forced passengers aboard a Caribbean Airlines flight at the Arthur NR Robinson International Airport, Tobago to remain on the aircraft for about an hour before they could disembark, the Express was told.
The rains also contributed to several crashes along the Solomon Hochoy and Uriah Butler Highways, and the Usine/Ste Madeleine reservoir near Princes Town, overflowed onto the Manahambre Road.
There was also flooding reported at Seuraj Trace, Penal, Ragoonanan Road, and Suchit Trace, Debe.
Ellen Lewis, communications manager for the Water and Sewerage Authority (WASA) said WASA’s reservoirs were filled to capacity.
Two years ago, around the same time, Trinidad and Tobago were experiencing drought-like conditions and WASA was warning persons against wasting water, under threat of prosecution.
Willis Mills, climate specialist at the Meteorological Office at Piarco, said the country has been experiencing La Nina since last year and it is expected to continue for several months.
When La Nina occurs, there is more rainfall than would normally occur during the wet season.
The opposite of La Nina is El Nino which is an extremely dry weather condition. This was the weather condition that was experienced in 2010.
Dr Stephen Ramroop, chief executive officer of the Office Disaster and Preparedness Management (ODPM) said yesterday he did not receive any calls from the regional corporations asking for assistance.
However he received calls from several radio stations informing him of incidents where citizens were affected.
Ramroop said homes in Princes Town, Penal, Woodland and San Francique were affected.
Ramroop said he was told the roofs of some houses were blown off but that information was sent directly to the Ministry of National Security.
Ramroop said the ODPM was as concerned about the heavy showers and accompanying strong winds.
He advised persons living in flood-prone areas to seek shelter elsewhere for the next few days because the weather pattern was expected to continue.
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