5 dead, 2 missing in Accra floods
Five persons reportedly perished yesterday in a downpour which took Accra residents by surprise.
The rain, which lasted less than two hours, left in its trail flooded streets and bodies.
As at press time yesterday, two persons could not be accounted for and are therefore deemed missing.
Many motorists who were scared of venturing through the flooded streets waited for the waters to recede before continuing their homeward trips.
The lesson of motorists being swept away in such deluges obviously informed their decisions.
Last year, a female lactating medical officer lost her life when her car was swept away in a rain which visited the nation’s capital.
The Greater Accra National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO), who confirmed the casualties, said out of the five dead persons, one was electrocuted after coming in contacted with live wire.
A woman and her baby perished in the rain, as did two men and the electrocuted person.
The Greater Accra NADMO Boss, Archibald Cobbinah, told DAILY GUIDE yesterday that the other remains have been discovered and conveyed to the morgue for preservation and autopsy.
He attributed the floods to largely human irresponsibility.
“The areas where the deaths occurred are not close to major drains, as in the case of Awudome Estates behind the public cemetery where one of the deaths occurred. The mother and her baby got drowned around Flamingo and the electrocution at Abossey Okai,” he said.
“The Greater Accra NADMO has a standby operations unit to respond to emergencies,” he said, adding that the injection of logistics such as excavators for clearing choked drains and the like, including pickups vehicles, would go a long way in facilitating the work of NADMO.
Nima uncovered gutter
The major gutter bisecting Nima in the middle which meanders from the Kawokudi area towards Ring Road and beyond was filled to the brim.
Two persons were rescued from drowning in the swift current. Earlier, the rumour mill had it that they had drowned.
The most significant place to, as it were, suffer from the brief yet destructive deluge was the place now sarcastically called by a section of Accra residents as Circle Dubai (Kwame Nkrumah Circle).
The Circle to Obetsebi Lamptey Circle area was a no-go area, the place having been submerged by rainwater reportedly coming from the eastern section in the Aburi Mountains.
According to them, the less than two hours of rainfall could not have generated so much havoc.
Some parts of East Legon were also affected by the rains leaving many to ask whether Accra, under the current realities of plastic-choked gutters and the general indiscipline of residents, can withstand a two-hour non-stop deluge.
Many have questioned the quality of the job done in putting up the maze of overhead vehicular passes.
The place now represents unofficially the benchmark for Accra floods, the annual phenomenon now part of Accra efforts to stem it not yielding anything substantial.
2015 fire and flood
Survivors of the 2015 fire and flood in which scores of persons died around the Kwame Nkrumah Circle area are still nursing their pain, as many of them have given up hope of ever receiving their promised compensation from the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA).
On that fateful night, June 3, a deluge supported by a fire, which engulfed a nearby fuel filling station, caused a disaster never before witnessed by Accra residents.
Over 100 people died in the fire which engulfed the Ghana Oil Company (GOIL) filling station during the deluge.
It was so intense that many described it as a night of horror.
When the water started surging through the Circle area and reaching a dangerous level many recalled the 2015 incident.
Last Sunday’s night rain also started gathering momentum, with the Circle area or Dubai eventually becoming the epicenter of it all.
Photographs of the scenes soon went virile, as people took shots and sent them round the world.
DAILY GUIDE was unable to get the Public Relations Officer (PRO) for the Ghana Meteorological Services Agency for the 2019 weather forecast and to determine whether indeed the rainy season has started in earnest but forecast show that there are heavy rains coming.
It’s unknown whether the 2019 rainy season has come but Minister for Works and Housing, Samuel Atta Akyea, has assured the public that he will work to end perennial flooding in Accra during the rainy season.
The minister and his team of engineers toured the areas on Monday morning to assess the situation.
At Adabraka, a major wall built recently to prevent rainwater from spilling into homes got damaged.
Garbage and silt were seen in some drains, especially at the Kwame Nkrumah stretch of the Odaw River, exposing poor sanitation in the city.
Addressing journalists after the tour, Mr. Atta Akyea, expressed concern about the human actions which contribute to flooding in the capital.
“It’s very unfortunate that human actions are a major cause of flooding in Accra,” he stated.
Accra rains are synonymous with flooding, human suffering and even deaths as evidence in last Sunday’s deluge.
Unfortunately, the same notes are read over and over again with no solution in sight.
The waterways continue to be choked by plastics, domestic waste and illegally constructed structures compelling water in especially low lying lands to find their way sometimes destructively.
AMA And Desilting
With the rainy season beckoning, the usual desilting of drainages will soon begin but as to whether the exercises would protect the city from the negative effects of the annual deluges remains in the realm of the crystal ball.