Kilmarnock begs for piped water

March 13, 2018
Tanks are used to store water at the Kilmarnock Primary School as the community continues to experience drought.
A catchment tank made by a resident to catch rainwater.

Prolonged drought threatens to worsen water shortage in the community of Kilmarnock on the Westmoreland-St Elizabeth border.

Worried residents are praying for rain soon as it is their primary source of obtaining the precious commodity.

"Up to wah day me have to buy water just because of the drought," Tamara Hudson told the WESTERN STAR during a recent visit to the hilltop community.

She, like other residents, noted that it is becoming increasingly tiring and costly to venture outside the community to seek water.

The people explained that they have to charter transport to travel to get water to refill their tanks whenever there is no rain.




However, not everyone has the money, and there is no water-truck service in the area.

Steve Barkley farms potatoes, yams and other crops.

"I have over an acre of land right now, and I can't do nothing. Just have to sit down and wait until the rain start fall. Sometimes when you reap, is some small something because it had no water to develop it. So the water situation rough up here, but we trying to manage as best as we can," he said.

For retired teacher Evadene Monteith, who has lived all her life in Kilmarnock, the community has never had the pleasure of piped water.

Monteith, who is in her mid-70s, said that though she hopes that things will change one day, she has doubts.

"From I was born, we have been using pans and tanks to store rainwater," said Monteith. "We have to provide for ourselves and make catchment tanks in our yards. So I don't have confidence that water will be coming up there (in the community). All we depend on is when God send it."


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