Public Works minister: $12m to cover Dorian structural damage

Public Works minister: $12m to cover Dorian structural damage
Minister of Public Works Desmond Bannister.

It will take $12.1 million to repair the structural damage sustained to both Abaco and Grand Bahama during the passage of Hurricane Dorian, Minister of Public Works Desmond Bannister revealed yesterday.

The cost includes assessments for buildings on the two storm ravaged islands where there was significant damage to commercial buildings, mixed-used buildings, and public buildings.

Of that cost, $3.6 million is needed for buildings that were destroyed and cannot be salvaged and over $3 million is needed for buildings that were severely damaged.

Bannister said 1,183 were assessments done for buildings that received minimal damage, and another 508 assessments for buildings with moderate damage.

“That’s a total of $12,132,500,” he said.

“And I said we are not finish, but that will give you an idea of where we are going.”

The public works minister went through the figures as he contributed to the debate on the disaster preparedness amendment bill.

“We then sent assessment teams to both islands,” Bannister said, as he referred to the work his ministry has been doing in the aftermath of the storm.

“Those teams have worked in the most challenging of conditions to provide assessments of the condition of structures in those islands

“In the process they are utilizing a computer programme that has been provided by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

“The programme permits them to chart the damage that every structure suffered.

“We can then use the computer to review exactly how much damage every single structure suffered.”

Bannister further echoed his support for the amendments to the Disaster Preparedness and Response Act, noting that it’s a “health and safety bill pure and simple.”

“Despite the timorous souls, it will be passed by a bold, progressive, caring government,” he added.

“It is in the best interest of the Bahamian people.”