Barbados Underground Storm Watch

Barbados us under storm watch and national shutdown policy was triggered by the authorities at 10AMtoday.

The blogmaster takes the opportunity to highlight a concern shared by prominent engineer Grenville Phillips II in response to a question from the blogmaster. He is also leader of Solutions Barbados.

When I started Solutions Barbados in 2015, I promised Roy Morris (then editor at the Nation) that I would always provide him with a response. I told him that one sentence that he would never hear from me was “No comment.” I have treated all media, including yourself, in a similar manner.

The PM is responsible during times like these, and is doing an impressive job at mobilizing resources to reduce the risk of damage, and informing the nation. So well done on that front. However, for completion …

My concern is that she is well aware that the primary shelter for families is their houses. Under PM Sandiford, we finally had a building code to inform homeowners how to build properly. It was, perhaps, the best building code on this planet – and that is no exaggeration.

To his shame, PM Arthur refused to enforce it or encourage its use, resulting in thousands of woefully substandard houses being built during his 14 year term – that is his real legacy. PM Stuart continued this legacy – actually, he was worse.

Even after claiming to be flabbergasted at the fragility of houses in Barbados after the damage done by Tropical Storm Tomas, not only did he not encourage the use of our excellent building code, he abolished it. Thus, Barbados (in one of the most hazard prone regions on this planet) became the only nation on Earth to offer no structural building guidance whatsoever to its residents.

PM Mottley inherited this mess, and is continuing the tragic legacy of PM Stuart. But just like how PM Stuart seemed determined to ‘out-worse’ PM Arther, PM Mottley is ‘out-worsing’ PM Stuart. She claimed to have lived through the devastation of hurricane Gilbert in Jamaica, she is aware of the state of our building code, the damage caused by Tomas, and the vulnerability of Barbadian houses. She is the Minister responsible for the Building Code, and yet, she has only embraced and furthered PM Arthur’s and Stuart’s damaging legacy.

With that information, I leave it for you to grade her performance.