Barbados Apartment Collapse – Day 2 Under The Rubble – RESCUE NOW BODY RECOVERY – New Collapse At Site


Barbados Prays For The Family & Rescue Team

Codrington Family Trapped: Donavere 30, Cassandra 27, Shaquanda 7, Shaquille 3, Yashiro 1 (Donica 3 months not trapped) (photo from Nation News)

Reports from witnesses confirm Donavere was alive and talking immediately after the collapse – had an injured leg.

10:49pm Barbados Time – Monday 27, 2007 – Voice of Barbados Radio

New Collapse At Rescue Site

Voice of Barbados Radio live reporting now. Not sure how bad.

Attorney General Dale Marshall is being briefed and he will then speak to the media.

Barbados Defense Force team members about to go back down into the hole!

Rain is starting to impact the recovery efforts.

Attorney General Now Speaking – 11:18PM

– There was some debris coming from the roof of the cavern so the media site was evacuated.

– Plan is to tear down the entire apartment building. The new collapse was small and is not in the part of the cavern where the bodies are thought to be.

– The weather was expected and plans were made to direct surface water away from the site. The Defense Force entered the remaining apartment building today and removed some personal items for the residents. Now talking about cadaver dogs earlier indicating an area of interest. This area is away from where the latest fall of material happened.

– It is thought that the latest fall of material did not further cover the bodies.

– Miami Dade & Barbados Emergency teams not on scene right now. Police, Min of Housing and Barbados Defense Force will work through the night. (Others had been working for two days straight)

– 11:26pm Interview over.

Maps Of Cave System Existed Prior To Disaster!

From CBC…

Rescue efforts called off
Monday, 27 August 2007

Disaster officials called off efforts to rescue five members of a family trapped in collapsed apartment building after they concluded that there was no sign of life beneath the rubble.

Minister of Home Affairs Dale Marshall said the “hard decision” to go into recovery mode was taken after a specially imported cadaver dog from the Miami Dade Police Department picked up signs of two bodies in the rubble, while two dogs trained to discover life form could not detect any survivors in the building which collapsed early Sunday morning.

“We have had to take the serious decisions to move into recovery mode … recovery mode as you know is when you move into the mode of removing the bodies, even though we are still having the an eye to the possibility of some survivors,” Marshall said.

He said close members of the couple – aged 30 and 29 – and the three children – aged one to seven – were informed of the decision to shift the operation and giving professional counselling.

Marshall said the 12 members of the search and rescue team flown in from Miami late Sunday night, along with the large team of local rescuers, would press ahead to complete the recovery process before expected showers made the difficult terrain more treacherous for the rescuers.

Meanwhile, the minister said initial seismic tests conducted at the site concluded that there was no need to widen the evacuation area beyond the 500 feet radius which was established hours after the collapse.

“We were able to procure up-to-date maps of the extensive cave network and the seismic team saw no evidence on which we could expect any further movement,” the Minister said, noting that the five families evacuated on Sunday would remain in government shelters until alternative accommodation could be arranged.

… from CBC (link here)

11:39am Barbados Time – Monday 27, 2007 – Voice of Barbados Radio

PRIME MINISTER ARTHUR – Live interview on Voice of Barbados


– Fear of approaching tropical waves.

– All the best efforts and the best equipment and rescue teams from Barbados and USA have not found evidence of life.

– While they are in a recovery mode, they are still hoping (but they are now “expediting” the removal of rubble.)

– Other Ministers and experts speaking… I’ll detail it when I listen to the recording again.

– Barbados does NOT have modern sounding equipment to map the extent of any caves from the surface! Equipment must be flown in and is not here yet.

– 11:51am – Media Conference ends with Prime Minister speaking again.

8:30am Barbados Time – Monday 27, 2007 – Voice of Barbados Radio

– Recorded Interview from earlier this morning, 6am or so, with Barbados Rescue Coordinator Dr. Brian Charles

“Still a rescue, not a recovery” but doesn’t sound at all hopeful.

– “Will take another 12 to 24 hours”

– Building was stabilized at 3:50am Monday morning and two US special dogs were sent in, but found no indications of life. At the time of the recorded interview the third dog had yet to go in – but I think I saw a report on Barbados Underground blog that third dog went in and found nothing.

– 500 foot evacuation radius still in force. No mention of expanding this radius.

8:00am Barbados Time – Monday 27, 2007 – Voice of Barbados Radio

Announcer just stated that the USA Dade-Miami Rescue Team have worked all night and report “No signs of life found by specially trained dog team”

INTERNET RADIO FOR OUR INTERNATIONAL READERS… Voice Of Barbados 92.9fm (Windows Media Player needed)

Stories On Barbados Free Press From Yesterday – Day 1…

Brittons Hill Barbados – Apartment Building Collapse Into Known Cave – Family Of 5 Trapped – US Miami Dade Rescue Team Goes To Work

Stories From Day 2 – Print & Online Media…

Barbados Underground (main blog here)

David has some overnight reports in the comments – detailing the rescue efforts with the US special dogs finding no signs of life. (Comment link here – Main Barbados Underground link here)

Pull! Push! (main link here)

Amit from Pull! Push! blog drove by the disaster scene at 2am last night on his way home. He didn’t see a whole lot happening, but his first person report is the stuff that blogging is made of. Although we on the island could hear radio reports and watch the telly, the rest of the world looked to the bloggers as the primary source of coverage for the first 24 hours. Amit was part of that first 24 hours. Read about his 2am observations at Pull! Push!

Nation News…

Witness: I spoke to trapped man


Going Down

Mum Still Holding Out Hope

15 Forced To Pack Up

Note – Many other stories on the Nation News. Check their sidebar listing.

The Advocate…

Rescuers Get Moving At 10:30am

Stress Runs High On Disaster Site


Filed under Barbados, Disaster

148 responses to “Barbados Apartment Collapse – Day 2 Under The Rubble – RESCUE NOW BODY RECOVERY – New Collapse At Site

  1. Anonymous

    I am now rather worried and curious to know what is under MY house! I live along that same ridge, and a cave is known to be nearby!
    What’s under your house?

    Think what happened,yesterday
    to real estate values in Brittons Hill!
    They just plummetted! – bad pun I know…sorry

  2. winston farrell (tmr)

    How can we say we are ready for any events that happen in a hurricane!I Know it was not a hurricane but look at what happen in other countries people trap under buildings(that same building )what would we do please tell me are we really ready

  3. Anon...

    Again I feel like this is a wake up call people, time to treat Mother Earth and Sister Barbados with some respect! The forces of nature are far more powerful than we care to admit sometimes.

  4. Anonymous

    lets keep our hopes up peoples and continue to pray they may be found alive and also continue to pray for the relatives this is a terrible disaster i dont remember anything happining like this in barbados before

  5. Anonymous

    You guys are whistling in the dark if you think anyone’s going to come out of there alive.
    Mind you, I hope you’re right and I’m wrong,
    but I don’t see it. Not now.

  6. Anonymous

    Given our geology, Barbados must have a ‘sinkhole history’ of some sort, no matter how small, in our recorded history since mid-1600s.
    Can anyone recall a story from any of the elders, now deceased?

    Where are the caves? Does anyone know?

  7. jinx

    The Advocate reports today that
    What is the point then of an “Environmental Impact Assessment (which) is currently under review by Government” ???

  8. Anonymous

    Now if yuh seriously want WEIGHT on a crumbling coral cap, look no further than flyovers.


  9. Rumplestilskin

    Re Jinx’s comment and Anonymous ”Now if yuh seriously want WEIGHT on a crumbling coral cap, look no further than flyovers.”

    I would have thought so too, but obviously we are too stupid to know better.

  10. Equilibrium

    indeed this incident will shape the scope of future infrastructural development in barbados…my prayers extend to all the family and friends of the deceased.

  11. It’s amazing that e don’t see whats happening, the Government have been able to control the people by llowing people to do exactly what was done here build on some place that was not properly checked, they’ve allowed people to have exorbitant Rent Rates, They’ve not made a decision about minimum wage as yet, and those NHC Units are a Fire Hazard if a fire starts down stairs ther’re no where to escape, and yet these get pass by the Government….welll there are just some things they can’t control …and Unfortunately a family had to suffer….God is still the One in Control not them.

  12. gentle jim

    My condolences to the family involved.
    I wonder if anybody has realised that since our Hon Prime Minister said he would move Heaven & Earth that there have been a series of tragedies happening to Barbados.Maybe God is speaking to the Nation

  13. Pingback: Global Voices Online » Barbados: Apartment Building Collapses

  14. TheWatcher

    This incident is indeed a tradegy.
    I would seek to absolve the government of all responsibility in this case. This is not to say that I blindly support the government or fail to support them. It is to say that we honestly cannot ascribe blame to them in this case.
    That ridge was in existence for years. People have built along that piece of land for years, and with no apparent problems. The sudden collaspe at that specific point must be investigated to the fullest extent to which we can investigate it.
    Why didn’t the entire ridge not collaspe with this specific section? Why just this section?
    Were the houses in the immediate vacinity and particularly this house ever show signs of weakening, cracks in the walls or other structural defects?
    How long was this specific house there and were any major maintenance works executed on it?
    This is a first for Barbados. We have NEVER had something like this happen on our shores with this level of magnitude before. The decision to call in help, seasoned in this type of disaster is commendable even if some feel that this was done too late. We’ve just never had to deal with this before and with a lack of experience in these disasters cannot be faulted.
    Let me play devils’ advocate for a minute. If we have a major air disaster here( and I am not wishing or hoping for one EVER)we would in hind-sight say what we could have done better. But never having experienced one means that mistakes and bad decisions would be made invariably.
    At this stage, we can only wonder why this happened in the way that it did. Our prayers and hopes go out to the family directly involved and their extended families.
    With the recent spade of disasters Barbados has had and narrowly averted(enter hurricane Dean) God is probably speaking to us.
    I am not one to preach gloom and doom, but it may be time to start turning a new leaf and curing our own personal ills so that those cures can be reflected in society eventually.
    Let’s start by controlling our own curiosity and desire to visit the area in question, allowing for those who are required to work there to have unbridled, un-obstructed access.
    Follow this up with a show of support(in whatever way we can) for the family and their remaining relatives.
    I do not know how this will eventually end, but we can all play a part to help, however it does.
    Gods’ will!

  15. Yardbroom

    I am saddened to hear of the tragedy at Brittons Hill and my deepest sympathy is extended to the family of those missing. My sadness is deepened by the fact I know the area very well – as I alluded to it in an earlier piece on Central Foundry.

    Those who are familiar with the area know that caves abound there, as a boy I often got marl from those cave formations to use at Christmas – young people might not know of that old Barbados practice at Christmas – as a boy you knew where caves were where soft marl could be obtained.

    Houses are now built on land where before people would not even have considered it, but then there was not the pressure for building land.

    It is too early to lay blame, as the facts are not before us to make an informed judgment, based on unbiased factual information. Grief sometimes causes us to be angry that is a natural human emotion, I am sure the rescuers will do all they can, and I wish them well in their endeavours.

    You asked of caves, also of concern is that there are quarries which have been filled in, in some cases now overgrown with vegetation and houses used for habitation are quite close. I am not a Geologist, but from the depth those quarries were, I am not sure this is a good idea.

    There is one near the end of Villa Road, on the right going towards Collymore Rock.
    There is another on Fordes Road almost opposite Club Morgan Gap.

  16. DFX

    This is truly sad. But it brings me to ask a small question.

    How long have we had the Harrison’s Caves? Are you asking me to believe that in all the years of having hundreds of people going into them on a daily basis we had no one properly trained in this kind of rescue had the cave roof ever collapsed?

  17. via Text

    Bodies have been found..

  18. Littleboy

    May God be with the victims and their families in this time of need..
    It is imperative that we look at construction methods, especially for buildings two stories and more.
    A look at the photocraphs show an absence of steel bar in the floor and ring beam.
    Tragedies of this sort give us a chance to do some introspection. I sincerely hope that the Town Planning Department and other agencies take heed.
    Coastal Zone management must take a more active role, as i have noticed a lot of construction very close to the sea.
    Drainage Unit must also step up to the plate.

  19. "Eternal Life"

    “How long have we had the Harrison’s Caves?”

    to be factual, Barbados has had Harrison’s Cave long before Harrison, or anyone other than Caribs/Arawaks set foot on this island.
    Elevation at that location is around 800ft. abv. sea level, and therefore that part of the island is approx. 800,000 years old.
    The cave may not have been that large,then,
    but in that time-span it has become bigger(as it continues to) until you see the size of it today.
    Give it another 800,000 years and it’ll be bigger again.

    What do you mean “you won’t be around”?

  20. DFX

    For the benefit of those that wish to be difficult.
    How long has the Harrison’s Cave been a tourist attraction?
    How many people have been trained in this kind of rescue? I suspect the answer is less than we would want it to be.

  21. John


    I’ve been through the emergency exit of Harrison’s cave about 15 years ago. You enter on the opposite side of Emerald Pool. That is what the boat is there for.

    It takes 3 hours and lands you in a gully close to Mount Wilton. You come out a colour that defies description. Some of the way it is necessary to crawl, other times you can walk upright and look perhaps 60 feet into the air to see the ceiling.

    I remember being told at the time that the Fire Service had received training in accessing the cave through this route back then.

    There is a section of the “emergency” escape where if you look up at the ceiling 60 feet above you will see a circle of light about where somebody once was digging a suck well, who knows when ….. but I will bet somebody in the area knows the story.

    Needless to say that well sucks well!! What happened to its digger, who knows.

    A cave in at Harrison’s Cave would be catastrophic as there is no guarantee that the emergency exit will not be affected.

    …. then again there is the well as an alternative entrance ….. if fortune smiles on the rescuers.

    This catastrophe at Brittons Hill is understandable, perhaps even predictable, but no one would think to predict it because it is not an event that we deal with on a regular basis.

    Sadly, we can only use it as a learning experience while sitting humbled at the feet of Mother Nature, watching as she determines the outcome.

    Hopefully land use decisions will consider Mother Nature and disregard who stands to benefit from them.

    The process of the Physical Development Plan provides for each resident of any area to make an input to development in that or any area.

    This is a way that the development of the area could have been informed by the older person who lived in the area from childhood and can speak from the wisdom accumulated by centuries of settlement.

    These people are the link to that wisdom, …. not the university graduates and foreign experts.

  22. Wondering

    Does anyone one know if it is possible to get a map of where the known caves are locate? Especially for people now wanting to buy land and build? How do you know if you’re going to be building over some point of a cave???

  23. Georgie Girl

    Lets pray that at least one of the survivors left the underground crash site and progressed further along the cave, away from more crumbling and danger.
    Someone wrote about the despair that must have been setting in as nightfall approached last night. In a hole that far underground, and under so much rubble, d’ya think there was much light under there in the first place?

  24. Backra Johnny

    john: ..

    “These people are the link to that wisdom, …. not the university graduates and foreign experts.”

    I agree 100% … We dont tap into the elderly’s knowledge enough … I have a lot of time and respect for elderly people …. maybe its because I’m fast becoming one ….
    My sympathies to the family …

  25. DFX


    I have listened to the talk given about the boat being used in case of emergency etc. I found it very funny. Just how many people are going to fit into that boat? How many “economy sized” tourists are going to be able to fit through the escape route you spoke of? It is as you hinted at not an easy trip. Especially if you are scared for your life.

    We need to have people trained in this kind of emergency. By all means send them to Dade County and have them trained there, but train them. Don’t let this catch us with our pants down again.

  26. Justasking

    August 27th, 2007 at 3:40 pm
    The process of the Physical Development Plan provides for each resident of any area to make an input to development in that or any area.
    This is a way that the development of the area could have been informed by the older person who lived in the area from childhood and can speak from the wisdom accumulated by centuries of settlement.

    These people are the link to that wisdom, …. not the university graduates and foreign experts.
    Good point John but how well is it publicised that people can make an input? Was it prominently publicised during the process of preparing the Physical Development Plan (2003 Amended) that is about to go before Parliament?

    Has the report of the commissioners been published or available to the public? What were the objections and representations?

    Think about the recent flooding in St. Peter where a hotel was flooded out allegedly because of construction nearby. Was professional advice by relevant Ministries followed or were they overuled? I do not know just asking!

  27. DFX

    Backra Johnny,

    You know well enough that we don’t seem to think that our “old” folk don’t know anything. I mean they don’t have the fancy education like our youth, they talk slow and they move even slower.

    But we will soon learn that a few O levels and CXCs don’t mean nothing when it comes to living close to Mother Nature. And that thinking before you talk may make you seem like you talking slow and looking where you going and figuring out if it better than where you leaving don’t allow you to move too fast and you may appear to be slow.

    Listen to you old granny or grandpa! They have forgotten more than you will ever know. They learnt it, they didn’t read about it in a book.

  28. John


    You don’t know!!

    The Government built the VAT building at Warrens over one and owes the contractor $50million as a result.

    I think you can predict their likelihood in an area and there are scientific methods of determining their exact location.

    The complete opposite occurs in the Scotland District. If you look at Morgan Lewis Mill there is not the slightest sign it is cracking because of land motion yet the old manager’s house has been demolished as a result of the cracks land movement caused to appear in it.

    I think the mill wall is built on a large piece of coral which broke off from the cliff long ago in a really substantial weather event and has been untouched by the major weather events to date …. since the building of the mill.

    How the people in the 1600’s could find such a stable platform in the midst of instability ….. don’t know, ….. but I suspect they were closer to the land and made the choice by observation, … perhaps even trial and error after losing mills.

    I am willing to bet they listened to old people!!

    Look at Breedy’s millwall in the next valley over as you come down the hill to Greenland. Half is gone.

    Most millwalls have disappeared completely in the Scotland District.

    Morgan Lewis is remarkable for its apparent weathering of the elements.

  29. John


    The pool is not deep and you can wade across it, if you can walk. If you are injured the boat will come in handy.

    A problem is getting injured persons in stretchers through tight crawl spaces and I understood back then the fire service did do simulated exercises to get “injured” out. I do not envy them knowing how difficult it was to get through.

    Working underground is not easy. Just look at what has happened to the miners in the US and how long the search has been kept up, with no result. Today we hear of a robotic camera that has been lowered to look, because people can’t get there ….. yet.

  30. Guest

    To Georgie Girl, i think that person may have also been referring to amount of time passed by then and the fact they still had not been rescued.

  31. "Eternal Life"

    “How long has the Harrison’s Cave been a tourist attraction?”

    Roughly twenty years – since mid80s(?)
    More? Late70s?

  32. Negrocrat

    On the question of building on caves in Bdos, I would want to draw to your attention that I was told that Warrens Complex was built on a cave. In fact, the DLP in 1987 had looked at it for relocation of Queen’s College. The engineers and other professionals in the government service informed the Administration of the existence of the cave and advised against putting a building there. That led to the search for a new site and that is why QC is where it is today!
    It was shocking to hear subsequently that NHC had agreed/or was pressured to put up a govt. complex there. What has really become of out civil service. Have they become ‘yardfolws’?
    What I’m saying here is a matter of public records because I got this info. from someone who was on the site visit.
    Please check this out for your keen and informed readers and contributors.


    The trend of comments by politicians is this was an Act of God.

    It is as much an “Act Of God” as when a driver operates a vehicle knowing that the brakes are bad.

    The cave was known but building permits were issued by government anyway.

    People died but they did not have to and I’m not talking about the rescue effort. People died because our government issued permits to build on a cave that was known.

  34. vicus ochilien

    This is one of more sad stories I have ever heard but we are all praying. I personally do not think there is any live person coming out but four bodies, sadly. I think VOB did a good job but I wonder what my house is built on, I know big up Waterhall is on top Harrison’s Cave. What made me sick to puke in the Chief Fire Officer’s pocket is that they did not get there til 10.30am if reports are to be believed and what can they do. They are not like the teams in the US and London and those other places.Owen was going though, unfortunately the plane was delayed long enough for Miami Dade to come back to find bodies if they had any life left. Could they not have left about 3pm and get here at 6.40pm. I am still glad they are here. Sad though, we need to have seismologists and geologist do a proper round up of this country, cos strange t’ings happening one after the other. Is God speaking, cos we breathe a collective sigh of relief when hurricanes fly by but our lot will be something different.

  35. Wuhloss looka life

    The fire department is a waste of time. Not only do they not have a concept of rapid response but they get to you, yuh house dun bun down.
    Buy a hose and keep fire extinguishers in the house and buy the fire alarm thing. That has nothing to do now ith if you drop 100 ft into a cave. Wuhloss, I grieve for the extended Codrington family…a whole family gone!Good God.

  36. Tell me it ain't so!

    I hope you’re not hinting that Bruce Bailey’s Magnificent Erection might one day just go schloooop …into the ground, all seven storeys of it!
    I hope you mean that just Government’s White Elephant is over the cave, and not all of Warrens !

  37. John

    August 27th, 2007 at 4:35 pm

    Good point John but how well is it publicised that people can make an input? Was it prominently publicised during the process of preparing the Physical Development Plan (2003 Amended) that is about to go before Parliament?

    Believe it or not the last Physical Development Plan passed by Parliament was 1991!!

    The next should have been 1996 …. by law!!

    Sometime in 1997 the ad appeared in the press. “The Physical Development Plan is ready, Come and buy it ….. and make your contributions in writing within a week!!”

    The process of preparing this plan involved many foreign consultants … who surprise surprise, consulted with locals, consultants and other knowledgeable and experienced people.

    No doubt the local “interests” got their bit in at this stage and no doubt persons who contributed took the opportunity to criticise any item slipped in which never appeared at the various meetings.

    Given that it was a couple of inches thick, a week seemed to be a short time.

    In late 1998, the Ombudsman convened the “Town Hall Meetings” to allow those who had made written contributions to be heard and those who wanted to make an input to do so.

    These were advertised in the press.

    The meetings were kept over a period of a week in various locations in Barbados.

    I went to the last one at Princess Margaret. The Ombudsman said this was the best attended of the five meetings.

    If there were 20 people present there were alot!!

    By contrast, early the following year, the Mullins Bay controversy occurred and Queens College Hall was strictly standing room only.

    I think David Ellis called that meeting!!

    The 2003 amended PDP is waiting to go to parliament having gone through the meetings of 1998 with the “public”.

    This document updates the 1991 plan!!

    The conclusion I draw from the whole process is the Bajans don’t really “seem” to give a damn until it affects them.

    This permits the powers that be to run roughshod over all the entitlements we have.

    It also allows vested interests get in their piece without discussion.

    We need to wake up because “development” has reached a point where like it or not, any crazy decision will affect a whole lot of us.

    We also are not really following any plan, just changing the use of the land and recording it in an amended document which may or may not get to Parliament …. as and when our MP’s feel like.

    …. and yet the same parliamentarians were able to pass a National Strategic Plan which they were not required to do.

    It also has no standing in law ….. and it is meaningless if our PDP is flawed.

    If they screw up our water supply through a series of idiotic decisions, thinking 20 years down the line is a joke!!

    We need to get the five year period right, irrespective of what party is in power.

    Then if we do it right four times, we will get the 20 year period right too!!

    The PDP, and not the party manifesto, is how we should measure our MP’s where the development of our infrastructure is concerned.

    ….. but we need to say what we want done and communicate it in such a way that any clown who enters politics understands clearly what is expected.

    …. and perhaps, we need some penalties that bite!!

  38. insured?

    will the owner of the fallen apt.bldg be covered for subterranean failures?
    Want to bet his insurance company finds four difrnt ways to squirm their way out of this claim?

    How about insurance policies for neighbouring structures? Were they all cancelled at 8:01 a.m, this Monday morning?

    When you take out a insurance policy, don’t read the list of what you’re covered for… insist on seeing the far-longer list of what your not covered for!

  39. Wuhloss looka life

    I think Dr Ronnie Hughes got pictures of the Caves and the Barbados Museum Curator might know who has because that is the museum or the archives in Balck Rock by the Lazoretto.
    IMagine, my house could be sitting on top a vacuus, gaseous, whole of death. Lord ha’ mercy and I mean it.
    Looka life, we discard the old people and they are the ones who have the wisdom. They could tell Miami Dade who are the best in the world, which part to go cos our useless fire officers too frighten anyhow. They are backra johnnies.

  40. Email

    in Mangrove two doors
    > down from her there is another big hole that opened up
    > and that also is taped may be another cave up
    > there in St. Phil.. What are the developers doing
    > before testing these Land Sites?

  41. Wuhloss looka life

    BY TEXT said bodies have been found, fuh real? I did not hear anything on the news. Pls confirm that sad news since VOB did not.

  42. unrighteous

    Sadly to say, Barbados and by extention most, if not all of the Caribbean islands are in no way prepared for serious tragedies. We still have so much ground to cover, and no one can really be blamed for this.

    Not even in a severe hurricane are we not prepared. As Al Gilkes mentioned in a previous Sunday Nation column, are we really ready and prepared for even a category 5 hurricane? No we are not.

    Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that CERO and all the other emergency organisations don’t know what they are doing (although in some instances it might appear that they don’t). I believe that they have done everything possible given their knowledge about certain emergency situations (which in some cases might be very limited).

    As developed as we want to try to make ourselves out to be, we are really a little third world island that can not help ourselves in major crises. I speak under correction, but a building collapsing, and further more collapsing into an underground cave, are not things which our emergency personnel are adequatley trained to deal with. After all, it’s not like these things happen on a regular basis. And even if they are trained in these situations, how often are these training sessions updated and modernised?

    The fact that we had to send to Miami for assistance, which came about 15 or so hours later, (considering that a flight from Miami to Barbados takes just over 3 or so hours) shows that our island’s crisis plan is in shambles – that’s of course, if we do have such a crisis plan.

    Storms and hurricanes as you now realise are not all Barbados may need to deal with, in terms of tragedies. As we have seen, it can be worse, and the powers that be should be able to deal with each and every catastrophic occurence in the most professional manner and more importantly within an effective time frame.

    If by some miracle the persons in the cave are still alive, we would all be able to say “Thank God” and plan better for any next possible occurence. However the sad reality of the matter is that everyone has probably by now died and as a result the powers that be would have to live with that guilt on their conscience, wondering if whether they’d had a more solid and efficient crisis plan in place, would those persons still be alive today?

    My prayers go out to the trapped family and to their relatives and friends. Please keep the faith, as hard as it may seem. All hope must not be lost, at least not until the bodies are recovered.

  43. via Text

    that missive came to me from someone well connected in the tv arena. beyond that i cant offer anything further. watch CBCTV@7 and all should be made clear,no? sooner or later they got to bring something ouka dah hole, alive or dead. personally i fear dey ‘dead’ but would be glad dat we get back at least some o dem -alive! what an ordeal,nuh?!

  44. Fred

    So can you tell me the status of Barbados with regard to the importation of dogs into the island, we were once considered a Rabies free island hence only dogs born and raised in the UK that is also a Rabies free country would be allowed into the island, anything other than this dogs originating anywhere else were sent to the UK for quarantining, has our status now changed with the allowing of these dogs into the island.

    I have no problem under the circumstances that they were brought in but it must change the Rabies free nature of the island once these animals set foot on Bajan soil, under the former head of the department who would get very hostile if an in transit dog was offloaded on the baggage belt without the necessary import licensing being issued.

    Any comments?

  45. via Text

    maybe bodies have been found, but not yet extricated from the tangled mess it’s bound to be,down there.. sein soah.

  46. Anonymous

    in an emergency situation the governments of this world can do any- and every-thing they please, dogs or no dogs, rabies or no rabies. there are times when all the old familiar rules fly out the window. war is one of those situations. dire emergencies is another.

    your dog remains impounded..sorry

  47. Sundowner

    These dogs are flown all over the world to disaster areas, they are vaccinated against Rabies and all other canine diseases, ie Distemper, Hepititas , Leptospirosis etc and probably a lot more!

  48. Fred

    So are now free to bring dogs from anywhere in the world without a worry?
    We can no longer be considered a rabies free country can we as we have broken our rules and landed dogs from a know Rabies carrying country.

  49. Fred

    Good thing Trevor King is no longer the vet in charge, he must be getting cat fits.

  50. Troubled

    Fred: Interesting point….if you refer to the daily nation today one of the articles states that a histerical cat alerted the neighbours something was wrong….hahaha

  51. Lady Anon

    VOB actually has video of the removal of the vehicle and a shot into the cavity on its website. It is a youtube video.

  52. Guest

    LOL! Troubled u just made me laugh out in the office, thank you.

  53. Tango

    Having read some of the posts today I must comment on a few things.
    @Fred: I have been looking into the requirements for the roving rescue teams and their dogs are required to be tested and certified that they have been vaccinated against all canine diseases before even becoming part of the team and they are checked regularly to maintain this status so your argument unfortunately sounds a bit “biased” in it’s thinking.

    In response to the article posted about the first response taking five hours. I can say that emergency vehicles and personnel were there well before 7:00 a.m and were trying various methods of accessing the cave but as stated in the Many media reports and on this very site the area was unstable and it would make no sense using a “whole lotta people an’ ain’t know wha down dey”.
    If by emergency response they mean seeing big events like the cranes coming etc then we as a species are in a sorrier state than I thought.

    In this terrible event let us not have our judgement clouded by emotions as most likely none of us here have the expertise to do what either the local rescue team or the Miami Dade team have. and just a note Our firemen and policemen DO get specialised training in dealing with these situations however they tell me that they always pray NEVER to have to deal with them.
    This isn’t saying there can’t be more training. There can always be more training but don’t “throw out de baby wid de bath water” in our critique of this tragedy.

    P.S. for all the politicos out there this is not a DLP or BLP or PEP problem this is a Barbados problem and don’t forget it.

  54. Anonymous

    A hysterical cat, huh?
    If only Bajans knew how to ‘read’ animals, like the Chinese, they woulda all be outa there, and no-one woulda dead! But the cat’s erratic behaviour was ignored/mis-interpreted.
    The signs were there, but no-one takes animals too seriously in this country…whuh daaaz only a rh cat!

    FYI, the chinese seismologists use animal responses to help predict earthquakes, since these “lower” life forms pick up lil telltale signals LONG before dumbass humans!

  55. Fred

    Reporter I seriously question the standards in place at the Coconut Creek site of which Patterson is a main shareholder and developer, if he is prepared to accept inferior quality steel at the Paradise project has he also accepted lesser quality materials at the Coconut Creek location in his effort to reduce his building cost ?
    I doubt that MrTrotman was kidding when he made it public that the steel imported and being used at Paradise was of an inferior quality to what is expected with the British standards.
    Cost and saving money is the prime concern in a project of this magnitude and scope, and they are doing their best by employing the illegal Chinese workers and using 2 nd grade raw materials steel being but one of them.
    Question is Coconut Creek sinking because of inferior quality products or because this too is being built on a cavern or the two combined?

  56. Fred

    The above was not meant for posting here, I am sorry.

  57. Lady Anon

    Anonymous…so true. One of the evacuees indicated that the animals were “acting funny”, including the ants. Shows how smart we are.

  58. Troubled

    I think if that was the case many people should go straight to jail!

  59. Wishing in Vain

    I had no intention of commenting on this caving in at Brittons X road however I must comment that the AG Dale Marshall has threatened the rain for the entire day and has been slowing the process down in expectation of rain, the most recent satellite pictures indicate a very small patch of cloud south of Barbados not likely to affect us in the least so why hold up the rescue effort we know that there was a strong voice after the collapse let us press ahead in the hope of a rescue.
    Come on Marshall stop grandstanding and getting TV coverage lets get on with the job at hand and attempt o rescue at all cost, these TV and radio appearences achieve little in helping those that need help now not lip service.
    Do you want private enterprise to perform the exercise and save your gov’t workers from the may fall rain?

  60. Thistle

    Wasn’t it at Banda Aceh, Indonesia, that the elephants suddenly fled to high ground before the terrible tsunami hit? Oh, yes, the animals know. From early evening on the day before hurricane “Janet” struck Barbados, not a bird was to be seen or heard. Not a leaf of a tree moved.
    Pity the peeps and waders that fly across the Atlantic from Canada and the U.K. don’t have the sense to realise that awaiting them in Barbados, instead of a peaceful haven where they can rest, are shotguns armed by a bunch of morons, aimed at them.

  61. Stay Tuned!

    glad you brought up the Coconut Creek thing…

    Engineering types tell me that’s a cute one to keep an eye on for a possible Episode Two!
    this time involving TOURISTS. Cute, huh?
    Apparently the new hotel on the old C.Creek site has a pool on the roof. More weight!
    (- and a sea cave underneath?) ooooh boy!

  62. Idealist

    Don’t these guys want to get wet.?

    There may be a family trapped.

    If our glorious firefighters are unwilling to risk their asses, then open the cordon and let the ordinary citizens attempt a rescue.

    It is now 36 hours since the incident occurred.

    Tie me to a crane and I will work through a monsoon to possibly rescue a frightened baby.

    Anything is better than nothing, somebody do something.

    Any response is preferable to this feeble crap.

  63. Getting BYE

    I was just talking to my mother and she mentioned that her father had told her of a plantation house in St. Joseph that had almost just disappeared into a crack/cavern/cave.
    This is going back about a hundred years that this woulda happened. Surely the older folk know about these things. Apparently it was located to along the road that travels south somewhere around the junction by St. Elizabeth, left to Ermy Bourne h’way, staight ahead or right turn to Bathsheba or all the way left to St. John.

    I aint saying the island falling to pieces but surely ig some areas are vulnerable it is better to know.

    Not like I have the kinda money it takes to build in BIM at present but for others you gotta make sure your investment is a good one.

    I was also wondering how the got houses building in lower estate now…I thought u couldn’t build bout there?

  64. jinx


    If A DOG was the only means of rescuing your good self under a ton of more of rubble would you really be agonizing over “rabid dogs “???

    And Fred you refer to the “Vet in charge”…. well the Vet In Charge still has to answer for the cat named “Sinclair”, which arrived at Grantley Adams Airport a few years ago en route to Grenada and ended up DEAD because (there are still no quarantine facilities for animals at our spanking new airport ) some idiot decided to “set it free” from its’ traveling cage ! His owners were naturally devastated that Sinclair having been in the family for 16 years, met his end due to negligence at the Barbados Airport. So tell me Fred what exactly is the function of a “Head Vet” is he or she there only to protect your interests or animals as well???

  65. Hydro-phobic Bajan

    “the most recent satellite pictures indicate a very small patch of cloud south of Barbados
    not likely to affect us in the least
    so why hold up the rescue effort”

    You’d think that Bajans (or Dale Marshall?) don’t have internet and access to weather sites that show closeups…

    Dale, please bookmark/Favourites this one, okay?

    when you click on the picture/spectrum of your choice and it loads
    you’re not done, you can then click again on/near your island and get a zoom-in closeup view.

    Had Dale used this sight, it woulda bin obvious that the risk of rain today was MINIMAL.
    But truthfully, Bajans fraid rain.
    Run TO fire, but run from rain – go figure.

  66. Tango

    @ vicus ochilien

    For your information the Fire Officers and Police were there Well before 07:00 I should know they made enough noise plus the Bajans who ain’t know nuttin bout cave rescue dat gine to see.

  67. Wishing in Vain

    Idealist you are right on the money, this is an absolute waste of time while they are posing for the press capturing a photo opportunity the effort is being misplaced and delayed, get into the job at hand get into the rumble, all I have heard so far by Owing, Marshall are excuses not to get deep into the task at hand, get digging surely anything that was going to fall would have fallen by now my god lets get to digging and searching and stop the press posing, lives are at stake, get a hundred civilians on the job and see how the boulders the rocks will get moved out of there in a hurry.
    Marshall every time you have opened your mouth you threaten the rain and making prepartaions for the rain that was supposed to fall at 1.00 o’clock it is now after 5.00 o’clock and no rain yet get on with the task and try to save a life or two.
    Stop making excuses for not knowing what to do and let someone take the lead and deal with it, you are rambling and doodling while lives are to be saved.

  68. Hydro-phobic Bajan

    Dale M. done know dat everybody dead, so iz no big hurry now.
    And nothing like the “threat” of rain to hold up a Bajan parade

  69. Wishing in Vain

    At 5.30 pm and once again another press opportunity for Marshall, he is now reporting in true American style as he said he is reporting from Ground Zero, once again another excuse to getting the task at hand done, more expectations for rain.
    I said before let loose a 100 men on the job and see how soon these people will be located, the minister is delaying and playing around milking this accident for all it is worth, instead of getting dug into the job.
    With every minister on candidate on location trying to get their picture in the news, give them a few shovles and let them do something for once in their lives in the house.

  70. J. Payne

    That is soo sad. This really and truely could have been any one of us. One minute you there next minute yuh gone.

  71. Idealist

    Give our heroes an umbrella and tell ’em its time to earn their paycheck…photogenic ministers included.

  72. Backra Johnny

    Fred ..
    How heartless can one get !!!
    You would actually begrudge the government bringing in these dogs to help with the rescue effort because they may have rabies!!!!!!
    Sheeeeess ….. wow ….

  73. Wishing in Vain

    Reporting the facts and these are the facts, making the most of this situation is what this is about.

  74. J. Payne

    Man I can’t believe how long this rescue tek. They could have use dem same cranes, have them park a ways- down the road— have the arm swing over the roof attach two rope lines to the roof(just for incase one fails), pull off that roof from over the hole, then Take a few people on the rescue team andlet them go down in the hole attached to the crane’s rope and have them dig those poor souls out from under the rubble… Next attach a gurney to the rope and lift them out since they would be injured then lift out the rescue teams … If they do this well calculated and refrain from touching the walls or surface immediately around the hole they should be able to get them in and out quickly.

  75. Backra Johnny

    Our leaders are trained at the “Cover your a_s University” they dont use their common sense (if they have any) and will only act if an “expert” advises.
    So some expert said we are getting a depression an nuff rain at 1:00 …
    I looked at the satellite images and couldn’t figure that one out at all …. but I’m no expert ….

  76. Hydro-phobic Bajan

    Can’t believe all this rain talk.
    This is stalling!

    Anyone with internet access could easily see NO RAIN for toady other than maybe a slight sprinkle and even that did not happen (I live close to the site of the collapse and there has been not one drizzle today!)

    Maybe Dale M. doesn’t have internet access???

  77. Posted my input on my blog. Using info from here.

  78. Getting BYE

    Idealist you right on and got me laughing although it is really a sad situation.

  79. Dani

    Are we not getting ahead of ourselves here? Yes ! Everyone has an opinion but lets stay to the facts please. You really believe these dogs maybe carry rabies? Please! The rains are expected to be here later this week and I believe that’s what Mr. Attorney General is speaking about. He wants to make sure the process is speed up before then and the deceased removed. He just for once thinking ahead. Give the people the props they need and stop putting them down.
    Nuff said.

  80. crossroads

    fred fred fred…..what do i say, you leave me speechless.

  81. jinx

    Fred does not understand that a rabid dog will not be interested in rescue work of any kind and its’ handlers would certainly never travel with a sick dog that needs medical attention. I am sure those rescue dogs are taken regularly to the vets for check ups.. (Funny how most dogs here have likely never even seen a vets office……)
    Would you go to work with a raging fever and frothing at the mouth?

  82. Sundowner

    Jinx,I agree Fred doesn’t know what he’s moaning about! as I said before these highly trained rescue dogs are immunized and kept in the best of health with regular medicals, they would never risk traveling with a sick animal. (If anything I would be worried about bringing them into contact with local dogs , most of which have no vaccinations against anything) Most likely they will have to undergo quarantine when they return home.

  83. Wuhloss looka life

    Man everybody gone off point what does rabies have to do with a hill of beans, sorry rubble. I take that back. The point is, there is no life down there but if I heard a whimper, I would not care if a dog covered in ticks with mange and rabies came to get me and let Miami Dade officers know that I am alive. It is very said. No point criticizing Miami Dade and how long it took for them to get there, what about the Fire Service here sitting on their asses and just talking to the press.Listen we aren’t ready for any disaster of any kind thanks to Judty Thomas declaring God is a Bajan. God loves everybody, they are just hapless Bajans but that is an inane comment. What is the point of training these people to just be their own PR. By the way, I heard that the ambulances have equipment in them but are only taxis because the government EMT’s are only trained in basics so they cannot set up a triage by phone with a doctor and administer a drip. All they can do is pelt some oxygen on your face while the defibb and drips lay idle. So next time, call a Taxi stand or drive your hurt self to…oh no, not QEH. Straight to the morgue.
    Thoughts and prayers still with the Codringtons. Those sweet children. The only thing is that they all passed together if that is any consolation. But it is not!

  84. teaser

    so sorry, they are no words that can express the sorrow and the hurt i feel for this young family.I know it is unlikely they are still alive but i pray for a miracle, i pray that they find another way out before they start digging, and may be causing more damage. Barbados need a serious pray, to many disasters and deaths, we need to take heed now and not tommorrow.

  85. Wuhloss looka life

    You in lie Sundowner, they might have to imprisoned in quarantine like speaker with the TB scare in the states. People real ungrateful. Our pot stravers can’t find anything but a sardine tot and the K-9 unit dogs here are trained to sniff out drugs. I even par one at Grantley Adams and he was wagging his tail. I got a nasty look from the task force but I don’t drug mule so I don’t care. I was at Miami airport and a beagle was jumping all over an elderly woman’s suitcase. Maybe she had snuff in there. But anyhow the dogs did a better job than the firemen here and they should get nuff treats. And the Miami Dade officers should get to spend a week ski-ing and tanning and eating Bajan food. As for Dottin and the big ups who just walk up and down talking to the press, they should be chided. Kudos to the actual rescuers and the hysterical cat. That cat should get a prize. Nobody needed all those people looking for votes up in Brittons Hill. The PM and Barney Lynch is enough. Richard Sealy used the moment to take political swipes. He needs to go on a diet.
    Sad, for the Codringtons, nobody can stop thinking about them.

  86. Reporter

    I would like to kill two birds here with one stone.

    The Blogs of Barbados like to project the image that they are the saviours of freedom of the press and free sppech. I say this only whe freedom of the press and free speech does not clash with their political, socaial and economic ideologies and their need to protect Politival lackeys of the Party they support.

    I printed some comments related to the tragic disaster in the BU and mentioned Margaret Knight of the DLP. She responded as was her Democratic right to do asking me to explain my comments.

    I tried 25 times to get my comments printed by the BU and came to the conclusion that they were being blocked/censored. So much for free speech!

    I am asking the Barbados Free Press to allow me to answer Margrets questions.

    Margaret I am Green Monkey on the DLP blog which I will no longer support.

    Now before you criticize me let me remind you that you publicly on that blog said you also use false names.

    Cheeeeers to you and your hypocritical friends at BU. And let me add that David Thompson is not being done any favors by either of you!


    BFP Replies…

    Dear Mr. Allamby

    Take a hike.

    Yours truly,

    all of us.

  87. Wuhloss looka life

    A mine is different to a house. They know the inherent risk in going in a mine and it is sad for them too but a totally structurally unsound house built whether on top a cave or not is bare $%^#%^$^$^%$@#@@143.

    The engineering code here is disgraceful and we are already densely populated. If the flyovers are near warrens then that government building opposite super center warrens, going downhill too. That man Bob Murray was making every excuse in the book too. The seismi activity was not naturally wrought, it was from the initial cave in, same problem here. Get the boulder off the people, let them rest in peace and if there is a miracle, then God Bless David, Jesus, Abraham, and all the people of God.

  88. Wuhloss looka life

    Reporter, you are right. But one also has to recognise that there really is no such thing as freedom of speech that is not tainted by the political, social, psychological and all the other ologies simply because the writers either have the agenda saet for them or they set it. It is just an academic fact. But how rude to tell you to take a hike. Their permanent hike is coming in the next election when 3 time loser and now loser extraordinaire George Pilgrim, and three itime loser David Thompson will once again go home as LOOOOOOOOOOOOOSERS.

  89. Wuhloss looka life

    Getting Bye – the place is falling to pieces.
    Enuf said.
    I don’t care by the way which political party this blog supports, I support the BLP. I am not home working like a dog for any party to then get pelt out like GP, General Secretary. But then he and Pedro are sipping Pink Sangria at an oceanside hotel. I guess he recovered.


    You know what
    Is anybody praying. A blog can be addictive.

    Pray for the Codrington family extended and for the baby. One cannot pray for the dead unless you are catholic but God knows their hearts. Pray for this country. Every Sunday that God sends something is happening. Judy Thomas smite the country with her dumb comment.

    I pray for peace and comfort for them one day (the Codringtons) and that though weeping endure for a night; joy comes in the morning. Cast you cares on Him , he cares for you and read Psalm 121, 46, 91, 23. We should all do it. Who knows what will come (or who) like a thief in the night for us. It could be us.

  91. Margaret Knight

    BFP: Thank you very much for coming to my rescue. Life on the perimeter of politics has taught me to endure the insults!


    BFP Replies

    Hello There Margaret Knight

    We may have unintentionally come to your rescue (not that you’d need rescue), but we had a long and most unpleasant experience with Mr. Allamby before and we just can’t bear the thought of going through that again. Better to nip his new identity while we still have our sanity!

    Yours truly,

    all of us. 😉

  92. J. Payne

    Mr. Fred. If them dogs were rabid you and everybody would know. The first thing that happens to a rabid animals is the rabies disease gets into their brain. It makes the animal aggressive to the point where it will begin foaming from the mouth… (e.g. like the phrase “Madd dog”) Usually the hair on the ‘back’ of the animal will stand straight up and it will be twitching with anger.

    A rabid animal will also always try to uncontrollably provoke confrontations with other animals to bite everything it sees and thus pass on the disease thru the saliva into the other animals’ blood. If those dogs were rabid you would know because those rescuers would be getting bitten by their own dogs when their dogs turned on them as if the dogs themselves didn’t even know the rescuer. I’m in the suburbs of Boston we literally have rabies animals all around here.

    Also most pets in the USA now are given rabies vaccinations from a young age. The problem is you have wild animals like Raccoons (which are VERY aggressive animals rabies or no rabies), bears, coyotes, wolves, stray dog and cats that were never owned, some squirrels that get bitten etc. etc. If an animal is rabid you’ll know it will start coming at you very aggressively and the only way to stop it is to kill it… If you get bitten you should try to bring the dead animal in for testing by a lab and they will test the brain tissue to see if there’s any presence of rabies.

    If the animal is rabid, you have to go on a 30 day injection based medication to keep yourself from getting rabies. Rabies is no sweet disease. Think of it as mad cow disease. Ever see a cow in the final stages of madd cow disease once the disease gets into the spinal fluid and the brain???? NOT a pretty sight.

    To tell you the truth Fred. There’s probably a much larger risk in having some person visit Barbados with something like Dengue, Mono, West Niles disease or yellow fever or other forms of blood based viruses and having them get bitten by a mosquito and then having that mosquito survive and start biting other people in the island. That’s– something serious that happens.

  93. Sundowner

    I agree, congrats’ BFP I passed ‘you’ on to Bajan friends abroad who’d not heard anything about this tragedy, you kept us all up to date, its been easier to check in on you during the day for info’ than get updates from the radio.

  94. John

    Getting BYE

    The incident in St. Joseph to which you refer happened in 1785 I believe, a few years after a major hurricane.

    The plantation house and mill were engulfed and all that was left exposed was the tip of one of the arms of the mill.

    I will post the description from Poyer about the Crabhole landslip.

    Similar rainy conditions as the 1901 Boscobel landslip posted earlier this year on BFP.

    What is happening at Brittons Hill is quite different. The roof of a cave collapsed. No rain at all and not a landslip.

    There may be a similarity between the landslip at Boscobel and this event. That is the way the limestone at the cliff edge appears to have broken.

    The processes however are quite different.

  95. st lucia

    it sad to know what happen to our sister island it can happen here too my prayer goes out to the family and i still hoping to find somes one alive

  96. John

    It would be interesting to know if the seismic unit at UWI reported any earthquake activity on Sunday.

    The 1901 Boscobel Landslip occurred in October of 1901 and Mont Pele in Martinique erupted in May 1902.

    I don’t know if there was a link back then but it would be interesting to know if there was some small earthquake early Sunday morning.

  97. Anonymous

    10:43 p.m Listen to VOB. Seems that another house maybe sinking!

  98. Anonymous

    how the hell could a landslip in 1901 be related to a volcano eruption one year later in martinique??!!!

  99. John

    Plate Tectonics!!

  100. Wishing in Vain

    Lets all get real about this situation and the results so far.
    The A G Doodle Marshall has made more TV and press appearences than most movie stars make in a year, and what does he have to report on the incident well maybe the rain was going to fall at 1.00 o’clock today and they were sandbagging in anticipation of this major downpour, then at 5.00 pm he has now decleared a wall looks like it wants to fall in, well if he waits much longer I am sure that the rains will come within this week and if we play around much longer the wall will fall in thru ageing and the natural process of time and the elements.
    The point here is instead of him making a concerted effort to get into the site and start a real removal of the rubble we are getting nowhere fast, he is milking this to the point that Bush milked the Sept 11th World Trade Centre buildings collapse, this recovery that Marshall is supposely overseeing is being compared to the effort at the WTC.
    Marshall this is a small project on the scheme of things not to be compared to the WTC collapse so please do not drag your feet any longer in setting to work, but instead the family would like you to cease the camera moments and instruct people to get into action.
    Worry about the rain when it falls, worry about the sun when it shines (as this will be the next likely drama moment for him as they will report that the sun is shining tomorrow and it is too bright to have crew working)
    Having to much political help here is becoming more of a hinderance than a help, were this left to the residents of the area these people may have been located already but instead we have two days rambling and waiting and wishing for rain.
    The residents are willing ready and able to move in and do their bit but the police state we now operate in put a halt to that effort.
    This cannot be tolerated much longer and results need to seen now not a week from now and yes if you continue to mess around it will be safe to conclude that they will only be bodies left to remove from the rubble but there is still hope for living ones even now so wake up and get to work get out of your office and set things in motion for swift action and quit the PR moments, the family needs your help in real terms not in lip service.

  101. bay

    all ridges and terraces in barbados are karst, in true bajan terms ‘ at least 50% of us live on cave systems either sea caves mainly st. lucy and st. phillip and other caves and taverns all over inland

  102. Wishing in Vain

    Bay this is exactly why Patterson new condo project is sinking into the ground at the Risk.
    This to has been built on caves, now is Town and Country Planning allowing him to corrupt the shoreline landscape by placing concrete beams to sure up these caves if so this needs to halted right away.

  103. NOT Cliverton

    The rains have started to fall in Brittons Hill.

    Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean are under notice of a weak tropical wave.


    BFP Comments….

    A word to the writer of this comment. If you or anyone else use one of our handles again you will be banned. BFP staff: Marcus, Cliverton, Shona, George, Auntie Moses, Robert

  104. Wishing in Vain

    Cliverton and as quickly as they have come they have left us as well,the 1.00 pm rains have abated.


    Wishing in Vain,

    Frankly speaking, all those POLITICAL STATEMENTS which you have been trying to stir up are VERY DISRESPECTFUL to the Codringtons and their suffering family members.


    BFP Comments….

    A word to the writer of this comment. If you or anyone else use one of our handles again you will be banned. BFP staff: Marcus, Cliverton, Shona, George, Auntie Moses, Robert

  106. Hants

    Let us hope for a miracle.

  107. Wuhloss looka life

    As everyone now knows, the Codrington’s are sadly buried alive. Miami Dade said it recovery. Let us hope that a respectful method of retrieving them can be done without the press zooming in so they may have a respectable burial to met their heavenly father.

  108. Warrior

    Anyone notice that the house had very little steel in it. No one has mentioned the construction of the house.

  109. Anonymous

    my heart go out to the family who has lost their love ones in this . also i would like to see other comments of the other topics that was posted on the 27 august 2007 wed page also.

  110. Rumplestilskin

    John ”It would be interesting to know if the seismic unit at UWI reported any earthquake activity on Sunday”

    I receive notifications of quakes worldwide, above I think 4 or 5 on the scale. There has been none for this area the last few days.


    You can register to have notifications sent to your inbox.

  111. Rumplestilskin

    Actually, there were two in the last week in the Central Mid-Atlantic Ridge, but not very near us.

    The closest was 8.02N 39.27W at 10km depth and 6.5 on the scale.

    That was last Monday.

  112. bay

    a building 20 years or older will not have the steel content as today, they use little or no steel back then, have u ever saw steel in the old slave huts or houses? no, so no one will mention the state of the still erected building. this is so serious, more than we realize, with the magnitude of construction in the island, who is to say this won t happen somewhere else? they are so many reported or unreported sightings of cracks in the earth nearly island wide it does not take a geologist to tell me our infrastructural geology, we are cave land and no one can deny that we need to know from the government where these caves are but from the way the elders talk and by our geology caves are everywhere even in the clay at the scottland district, if we are butting too much pressure on the caps we need to know, i think experts (not ours) should be called in to make a full accessment of the island (was this every done with the modern technology) we need a independent study (not that the gov’t will take it seriously, look at greenland) i too live on a cave but fortunately enough it is a seacave with should (i hope) be less fragile that inland crust caves and taverns. we need to know the dangers zones.

    we were taught about christopher columbus but where did the ameridians, arawaks and caribs lived? it surely was nt houses, u tell me.

  113. jinx

    Do you not know what Barbados does with “foreign experts” after they have concluded studies around here??

  114. Nation newsp. at URL..

    “There were two fault lines through the roof of the cave. One of them is exactly where you see the building split now, but it extends further under that apartment block, it extends across the road to the junction and it extends nearly to the front door of the house on the other side of the road and halfway under the house to the north,” said Adams.

    He said the area was surveyed about a month ago and the cave collapsed on the fracture.

    “The areas to the west have now fallen in, the original cave mouth is now closed, the rock is fractured and it looks as though it will fall out to the west. There is also the business below the cliff that is under threat.”

    Xxxxx said he was aware of planned construction at the rear of the apartment but whether or not the work had begun, the cave would have still given out because water was also weakening the area.

    “There are four storm drainage wells hooked into the corner adjacent to the building, and they are degrading the rock. The surveyors surveyed it prior to their doing work next door and it already had fractures through the roof of the cave.”

  115. RealEstateValues=0

    I lookin to buy property in that same gap.
    Right next door, in fact.

    I got fifty dollars to buy with.
    You got change fuh dat?

  116. Bimbro

    BFP, I’ve often thought it a pity that you don’t run a proper online discussion forum alongside your blog. Often related subjects crop-up from your blog comments which one would like to discuss but are unable to do so because it would be ‘off-topic’, if you see what I mean.

    Can you give serious, consideration to this suggestion. Now that The Nation’s forum has effectively, ceased I think that Bim deserves more than one significant discussion forum. I’m sure that your friends at ‘Tell It Like It Is’ would be happy to give you the gen. if you needed them to!

  117. Anonymous

    there’s no such thing as off topic,here.
    it flows like a conversation…evolving anywhere it wants to run, but you have a problem with that,somehow. I guess we’re all different. no big ting

  118. caveman



  119. Wishing in Vain

    Lets seriously hope that today Marshall allows the crews to press ahead with their effort to rescue or retrieve the persons from the collapsed building.
    We have played around for two valuable days while he forecasted rains that never came, while he and the rest of his cabinet took the photo opportunities that presented themselves.
    Enough doodling Marshall instruct the rescue teams to go full speed ahead and lets get this thing done and dusted give the family closure to this affair.
    There will many better times to gloat for the press not lets use this time any longer as one of those times, get them to work or let the residents or ordinary citizens get the job done.

  120. Anonymous

    August 28th, 2007 at 4:52 am

    Thanks for the info.

    Montserrat, Kick ’em Jenny, Mud Volcano off Trinidad, Boiling Lake Dominica …….

    All in the past decade.

    Makes you go hmmmm!!

    Maybe the plates are telling us something.

  121. Citizen First

    Wishing in Vain

    (assuming the post above is yours), I humbly suggest that you are way over the line of what defines responsible and fair commentary.

    The implication that the Attorney General and by extension the Cabinet are deliberately retarding progress in the efforts at Brittons Hill ( eg “…hope that today Marshall allows the crews to press ahead….. “Enough doodling Marshall”) so that they can indulge in PR (eg ” took the photo opportunities that presented themselves ….to gloat for the press” ) is contemptible.

    There are many persons from the various departments of Government as well as from the Miami Dade Police who are giving of their genuine best in attending to this matter. I think it is malicious to attempt to score cheap political points by stirring up the already anxious emotions of the public.

    There are more than enough OTHER issues of possibly demonstrable incompetence/corruption for you to comment on.

  122. Wishing in Vain

    So are we to continue to hold out to see if it will fall or are we going to be proactive and address the problem and move on?That is my issue, they need to take action one way or the other but to doodle is going no where, if the buildings need to be removed get to the task but stop messing around and do some positive work the people need to feel that there are working seriously to get to these people or bodies.
    We are also being made aware of Coconut Creek suffering the same fate with their roof top swimming pool adding to the weight of the multi storey building it is now collapsing into a cavern.
    My real purpose is to try to kick him into action and lets get a move on with this ASAP, surely after a third day they really ought to be progress in the recovery of persons or bodies.

  123. RealEstateValues=0

    caveman said..


    raaaaaaas! are you saying then
    that real estate values all over barbados
    are set to decline?
    – knowing what we now know??

  124. Curious

    August 27th, 2007 at 12:48 pm
    Given our geology, Barbados must have a ’sinkhole history’ of some sort, no matter how small, in our recorded history since mid-1600s.
    Can anyone recall a story from any of the elders, now deceased?

    Where are the caves? Does anyone know?

    To answer you. A friend of mine told me, his mother told him, that she had been told, as a child about an incident when the earth opened up and swallowed up some houses, people and all in Barbados. Now considering his mother’s age, which must be 70 something, this piece of oral history was probaly passed on from her mother or grandmother. The incident perhaps somewhat exaggerated with the telling, must be 1880’s. It would be interesting to find out.

  125. The rush is off

    We need to face the reality that there is no more rush to rescue trapped/injured living persons.

    Three dogs and sensitive sound recording equipment cannot be wrong, despite all the wishing and hoping and prayers and miracles and soppy sentiment that refuses to face the reality of Death.
    The rush is off. Yes, the families need closure and they shall indeed have that closure,
    but the Government of Barbados is very nervous at this sensitive juncture,
    and is more than covering its ass,legally and otherwise!

    Anyone looking at CNN last week would note that 3 rescue miners died(and a doz. others wounded) trying to go in to similar circumstances to rescue(recover bodies of) miners that were trapped/dead.

    Same circumstances here and now,
    except we’re now 99.8765% SURE that no-one survived a collapse of several TONS of concrete.

    Yes, they’re dragging their feet(or so it seems) but I say they have their reasons legally, in the light of lawsuits that are bound to fly, many of them directed against said GoB (to wit Town and Country Planning!)
    for having allowed risky construction to go ahead with the attitude that it can’t happen here.

    Well…it happened here,
    and this has been The Summer Of Death on this island,
    with 6 dead on a Sunday, 4 more dead the following Wednesday, and now this!

    These things happen “IN THREE’s”
    Maybe now we’ll get clear thru to Christmas, without similar unfortunate incident.
    Let us pray for THAT.

  126. Lady Anon

    Wishing in vain…the building did fall. What if they had done what you suggested? Perhaps there would have been more casualties.

    Proceeding with caution is the best bet. Bajans are back seat experts on everything.

  127. Anonymous

    “his mother told him, that she had been told, as a child
    about an incident when the earth opened up and swallowed up some houses, people and all in Barbados.
    Now considering his mother’s age, which must be 70 something, this piece of oral history was probably passed on from her mother or grandmother.
    The incident perhaps somewhat exaggerated with the telling, must be 1880’s.”


    Very interesting!
    All along, I suspected that this must have happened before,
    so indeed Barbados does have a Sinkhole History,albeit limited (one incident per century?)
    – still…that gives us maybe four such calamities since 1627 ?

    Barbados Dept. of Archives may hold all the info. – who’s going to dig it up?

  128. Citizen First


    in the light of this disaster, the Coconut Creek Hotel issue is fair comment, we would not want a repeat of this situation. In the aftermath of this tragedy, it will be reasonable to review and analyse all possible contributing factors including administrative error and omission.

    I can understand that onlookers are anxious and want as speedy a resolution as possible but let us take the cue from those on the scene who are trained, armed with the resources and most importantly possess the first hand information about the site and surrounding geology. The safety of the workers must also be considered.

    Up to late last night work was going on. Parts of the apartment were demolished. A friend of mine who witnessed this demolition commented on the skill of the machine operator who took care that more material did not go into the cavity where the family is buried.

    In the ongoing matter of finding the family and protecting residents from immediate danger I believe the Government is acting responsibly and with all possible dispatch.

    For what it is worth, I extend my sympathies to the relatives of the Codringtons, hope that a miracle happens and that in time healing will take place.

  129. caveman





  130. caveman



  131. J. Payne

    To annon: The eastern United States is over due for a large earthquake as well. I keep feeling small tremors here in Boston. I felt the one back on 10 August…

    Here’s the last few light earthquake termors that New England has experienced. Boston usually has a bad one every 300 or so years. The last one was the 1700’s when that hits it will shake the USA all the way down to Miami.

  132. J. Payne

    In terms of this situation now, it is very serious. In previous years we didn’t build soo tall, and we didn’t use as much cement and concrete except for mainly in Bridgetown, Holetown, Oistins, Speightstown etc… “Chattel houses” of yester-year were main comprised of wood.. (Which is relatively light-weight with maybe a few cinderblocks if lucky to raise it off the groun’. Now this is all being replaced by heavy “wall” houses in our modern Barbados. We’re building big 2 story buildings with porches and verandas on ground not made to support it. We need to get serious about mapping what lies under our feet before we construct anymore.

  133. J. Payne

    Re: caveman
    August 28th, 2007 at 1:54 pm


    The Spaniards also didn’t want Trinidad and Tobago if you remember too. The Spanish were mainly in the new world for two things. 1) Gold and 2) Slaves.

    The Taino, The Arawak, The Ciboney(sp?) etc. were all shipped back to Spain to work as slaves. They have all long since been assimilated into Spanish culture after they’ve intermarried over the centuries. As far as gold the Spanish made no secret of this. Puerto Rico = (“Rich Port”), Costa Rica (“Rich Coast”) the Spanish gave up all land holdings in the Americas after they got their fill of gold. Meanwhile all the other European ‘powers’ besides Denmark, Portugal and Sweden all still have some territory in the Americas.

  134. Bimbro

    August 28th, 2007 at 12:08 pm
    there’s no such thing as off topic,here.


    All I can say is – amazing!

  135. J. Payne

    Barbados and Tobago are supposed- to be the only islands like each other in this part of the Caribbean. The rest were of Volcanic origin….

    Source: The Barbados Government during the UNCLOS proceedings. The gov’t knows all this kinda stuff and holds out.

    Click to access Final%20Award.pdf

    ** Page 15 **
    1. Relevant Geography

    42. The islands of Trinidad and Tobago lie off the northeast coast of South America. At
    their closest, Trinidad and Venezuela are a little over 7 nautical miles (“nm”) apart.
    Seventy nm to the northwest, there starts a chain of rugged volcanic islands known
    collectively as the Windward Islands, made up of Grenada, The Grenadines,
    St. Vincent, St. Lucia, Martinique, Dominica, and others. Barbados is not part of that
    chain of islands, but sits east of them. Collectively, all the aforementioned islands, and
    others that are farther north, make up the Lesser Antilles Islands.
    43. Barbados consists of a single island with a surface area of 441 sq km and a population of
    approximately 272,200. The island of Barbados is made up of a series of coral terraces
    resting on a sedimentary base. Barbados is situated northeast of Tobago by 116 nm and
    nearly 80 nm east of St. Lucia, the closest of the Windward Islands.
    44. The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago is made up of the islands of Trinidad, with an area
    of 4,828 sq km and an approximate population of 1,208,300, and, 19 nm2 to the
    northeast, the island of Tobago with an area of 300 sq km and an approximate
    population of 54,100, and a number of much smaller islands that are close to those two
    main islands. Trinidad and Tobago has declared itself an “archipelagic state” pursuant
    to provisions of UNCLOS. The islands of Trinidad and Tobago are essentially the
    eastward extension of the Andean range of South America.

  136. John

    Getting BYE

    This is an account of what happened at Crabhole (St. Elisabeth’s) back in 1785. The chasm was the result of a landslip, not a cave in. Interestingly it happened in early October, like the Boscobelle landslip of 1901.

    Late September to early October is usually the critical time for bad weather and heavy rainfall in Barbados.

    The History of Barbados by John Poyer, first published in 1808, pp. 569-571.

    “Among the various operations of nature, which excite our admiration, alarm our fears, or amuse our imagination, the following singular and extraordinary phenomenon will not probably be deemed the least curious and interesting.

    On the eleventh day of October, the inhabitants of a part of St. Joseph’s parish called Crab-Hole, were alarmed at the appearance of several deep fissures in the earth, and their apprehensions were soon augmented, at finding that some small tenements had sunk to a considerable depth.

    These alarming appearances continuing to increase, many persons were induced to remove their effects to places of greater safety. The plantation known by the name of Walcott’s, was destined to be the melancholy scene of this extraordinary occurrence.

    Here, the manager, perceiving that the mansion house was in danger of being buried under the soil, which was descending in large, connected masses, from a neighbouring hill, fled with his family to one of the negro huts for shelter.

    In the course of that distressful night, most of the buildings of the plantation fell, or sunk into a deep chasm, which was presently filled up with the mold from the adjacent heights.

    The alarm now became general, and the people assembling near the spot were witnesses of a scene of truly awful and affecting. The aspect of the whole region from Walcott’s to Crab-hole, extending upwards of a mile in length, and in breadth about three hundred yards, exhibited a lamentable prospect.

    The earth, violently torn asunder, was intersected with numerous chasms, whose widely extended jaws seemed ready to ingulph whatever might be precipitated into them; while, in other places, it was swelled and inflated with enormous tumours, whose convulsive motions menaced the few remaining buildings with destruction.

    Nor was it long before they were involved in the general wreck, and, sinking into the yawning gulf, left no traces of their former existence behind them.

    The face of nature was so completely changed in that district, that few of the inhabitants could ascertain the spot on which many objects, familiar to their remembrance, had been recently placed.

    A field, planted in Eddoes, occupied the site on which the mansion house stood, and brought with it a long slip of the broad road, as perfect and entire as if it had not been removed*.

    The cocoa-nut trees, which grew about the house, and even the windmill, were gradually carried some hundred yards from their original position, where the latter was completely swallowed up, no part of it remaining visible but the extremity of the upper arm.

    It is not easy, perhaps, to explain satisfactorily the cause of this phenomenon. Probable conjecture ascribed it to the action of a number of subterraneous springs, in a loamy sandy soil, surrounded with recent excessive falls of rain: these springs, struggling for vent, might probably have excavated the encumbent earth wherever they endeavoured to force a passage.

    As these invisible waters glided onwards, the surface behind seems to have fallen in, or, meeting with a substratum of a soapy nature, continued sliding down the adjacent declivities as long as it retained, or acquired, sufficient moisture to facilitate its motion”.

    * This is an occurrence that happens, not infrequently, in the parishes of Saint Andrew and Saint Joseph, during the rainy season.

    In that part of the country, which, from its resemblance to the highlands of North Britain, is Scotland, the earth is composed of various strata obliquely disposed.

    The super-stratum is generally a rich loamy soil of saponaceous nature, which, being of no considerable depth, easily separates, when saturated with rain, from the substratum, which is commonly of a slippery chalk, flat stones, or loose, red gravel, and slides in large masses, with its growing produce, into the vallies below.

    Thus whole fields of sugar canes, corn, and potatoes have sometimes changed masters, and even lofty trees have been removed to a considerable distance without injury.

    Of this the curious reader may find instances related in Hughes ‘s Nat. Hist. Barb. p. 21.

  137. bay

    J. Payne

    do you know we make up part of the south american plate? and not part of the caribbean plate.

  138. J. Payne

    Re: Bay. I was unaware which plate Barbados fell upon. I thought it was just a piece going towards the centre of the Atlantic Ocean but I just checked and saw what you mean.

    These plates are getting antsy lately. Think back to Montserrat in 1995. For as long as history was recorded on the island the British thought that island to long ago been dormant. Then the mud volcano off Trinidad’s east coast which is forming a new island was causing some alarm the plates in our part of the world seem to be taking on stress.

  139. Anonymous

    “John” can you email me at

  140. guy who was there

    This is my final post. I am too enraged t continue reading any more of this forum. The one thing I regret is telling that man who passed away that the firetruck was there so he was safe now. I am sorry I told him that lie, because he believed me. I will never forget that day as long as i live. As I sit here, wearing other peoples’ handouts…….. I don’t even know what to say. But one thing is for sure, I have lost all respect and trust for any government emergency institution, all politicians and anyone wearing stripes. And if my faith was weak before, it is probably dead now. How is God good as people keep saying because he speared the other families, and he let those people be caved in alive and die. They werent even unconcious. This country is dead, i no longer care for it.

  141. jinx

    guy who was there,

    Your account of what happened immediately following the collapse is burned in my mind.
    In all fairness to the professionals who arrived on the scene and removed you and your comrades, perhaps they feared risking further lives had you all been allowed to go in after the trapped family….. i do not know. But you did a great thing in communicating to those unfortunate people that YOU heard their cries and YOU were there with them for as long as YOU were able to.
    Given the circumstances, you did what you could…..

  142. Wishing in Vain

    guy who was there
    We can sympathise with you on your involvement in this tragic collapse but rest assured that life will eventually settle again and return to being close to normal.
    And I think that most of us understand your torment about those voices and their calls for help.

  143. Kelly-Ann

    I am a geography student and i am deeply sorry for your lost. Im from St.Lucia and i was given an assignment about this tragedy. I would like to find out what may have led to this collapse?? I hope you find the family and hope that they are alive . just put your trust in God and he will save lives. God works wonders.. If you have any answers please can you email me at ( . this assignment is due for Wednesday.. Sorry for your lost.

  144. OMG


    Why is the local media silent on this

  145. OMG

    Coroners date of death is Tuesday August 28th.

    Over 48hrs after Attorney General shifted effort from Rescue to Recovery.

    Codringtons were still alive when Miami Dade Team reached back to Miami.

  146. I cherished up to you will obtain performed proper here. The comic strip is tasteful, your authored subject matter stylish. nonetheless, you command get got an shakiness over that you wish be delivering the following. unwell without a doubt come further formerly once more since exactly the similar just about a lot incessantly inside case you shield this hike.