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Sand bags out as flooding hit Apia again

Mountains of sand bags were once again the look in Apia yesterday as heavy rain caused flooding in areas such as Vaimoso, Taufusi, Fugalei, Savalalo, Matafele and Beach Road.Many businesses were forced to close shop as the water levels rose.Owner of Bambina’s Café at Saleufi, Maxine Mailo, said she is always affected by flooding and she is tired of it.“I’ve been a victim of this constant flooding in town where my business is and Apia Park where I live,” she said.“To think that the government has been spending so much money on the drainage system that is just not effective, it’s just sad.”Mrs. Mailo said it is about time the Samoa Water Authority (SWA) reconsiders where its money is spent because their so-called drainage system just does not work.“It is a bit confusing that the SWA declares a scarce supply of water every month when there are days like today (yesterday) that rains freely for at least 24 hours.“Isn’t it time they (SWA) consider investing in water retaining projects like dispersing water tanks to every family and business in Samoa, two birds with one stone they say.“This flooding problem is not being taken care of by trying to create drainage systems; they should consider retaining systems instead.”Building and Maintenance Manager of Eveni Carruthers, Ash Lam said the new drainage systems in the town area should have protected the Central Business District (CBD) from flooding.“The entire back area of our shop was dug up to install pumps to drain sewage and water from the CBD but obviously the system is not working because we are still getting flooded.”Carruthers suffered a lot of damage during lasts year’s Cyclone Evan due to flooding.“Water rises from underground, brings up the sewage, dirt, mud and rubbish and brings it to our doorstep; what happened to the drains?“A lot of money and time is spent combating the effects of flooding for our business both before, during and after it has happened.”The flooding in central Apia has also hindered business for some people.“Not very many people shop when it rains and what’s worse is having to shut down because the water is beginning to come through the doors, it’s very frustrating.” said Mr. Lam Mrs. Mailo says the constant flooding is costing her.“It’s frustrating cleaning up and having to invest in new appliances and furniture that was damaged by the water.“Everyone has their own story and mine may be very small compared to the many other businesses suffering the same situation.