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May 5, 2014
Star News


Elderly woman's leg gets stuck in manhole covering
Gareth Davis Sr, STAR Writer

A firefighter and residents look on as a woman pours water on the foot of a distraught elderly woman, after it was pulled from a manhole covering where it was stuck. - Gareth Davis

An elderly woman was rushed to hospital shortly after 5 p.m. Friday, suffering from cuts and bruises to her right leg and upper body, after her foot got stuck between a iron-grilled manhole covering on West Street in Port Antonio, Portland.

According to several witnesses, the woman was walking along West Street towards a farm store, when her right leg slipped through a manhole grilled covering. The woman reportedly hit her head on the nearby concrete pavement and cried openly for help.

"We rushed to her assistance," commented Arthur Patterson, an alleged witness. "It is because of the roadwork that they are doing, which has messed up Port Antonio, while endangering people's lives. There is hardly anywhere to walk in this town, and if you are not careful, you can be run over by a vehicle, or break a leg on those iron grilles."

West Street has been dug up to replace and install water and sewerage pipes as part of a $1.8-billion water, drainage, and sewerage project undertaken by Vinci construction company.

As a consequence, traffic has been diverted to various streets and side roads. A dust nuisance, compounded by the dumping of material and heavy-duty equipment, has narrowed the walkway for pedestrians significantly - leaving also several business operators fuming as sales have taken a nosedive.

It took the effort of a fire team to free the woman's leg, which was covered in mud. The elderly woman, who appeared to be in shock, was lifted and placed into a nearby taxi by firefighters and taken to the nearby hospital.

People are calling on the contractors to ensure the safety of pedestrians and others.

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