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Harbour Road morning traffic diverted after stone wall collapses

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An 81-year-old woman opened her front door to see “nothing but rubble” after her garden wall tumbled down a hillside and ended up across the road.

Hope Bowker was left trapped in her hillside home for several hours as all four tiers of her Bermuda stone wall collapsed and blocked her pathway.

Ms Bowker of Harbour Road in Paget was awakened by what she thought was a thunderstorm at about 6.45am yesterday morning.

It was only when a passing taxi driver called her to tell her that her wall had collapsed that she realised the full extent of the damage. Ms Bowker walked out her front door to see police officers had cordoned off the road below her house.

The small landslide caused severe disruption to rush-hour traffic as Harbour Road, between Tribe Road 4A and Valley Road, remained closed for a couple of hours.

By about 9.30am the eastside lane had opened to traffic but westerly traffic continued to be directed onto Middle Road at Lovers Lane until about 11am.

The debris was eventually cleared by a team of Works and Engineering staff using specialist machinery.

Ms Bowker said the collapsed wall was an “act of nature” caused by a combination of torrential rain, heavy traffic on Harbour Road and the vibration of loud music from Hamilton.

She said: “I thought I heard thunder and the dogs were barking … then I couldn’t believe what I saw. “It was a real mess, everything was covered in rubble. I could see nothing but rubble. The whole hillside collapsed. I couldn’t move from my house”.

Insurance claims officers immediately attended the scene and Ms Bowker said: “I don’t even want to think how much all this is going to cost”.

Ms Bowker said the same wall had partially fallen down over the Cup March weekend last year and a neighbour’s wall had also recently collapsed.

Ms Bowker, who has lived in the area for over 30 years, said: “There’s a tremendous vibration on Harbour Road because of the music coming from Front Street. We feel every thump of the bass.

“Then there’s all the traffic, we get all the heavy trucks coming along here now. That never used to happen, it’s changed in the last five years. It really is horrendous”.

A police spokesman said officers responded to a report of a collapsed wall in the Harbour Road area at about 7am yesterday.

He said: “On arrival, officers noticed debris in the road and began the cleanup process. “The Department of Public Works was later called in to assist.

“Traffic was initially diverted onto Middle Road, which caused some traffic delays. Harbour Road was reopened later in the morning”.

Curtis Cinnell stops to look at the Landslide which took place yesterday morning on Habor Road.(Photo by Akil Simmons) September 1,2011
A garden wall gave way on Harbour Road yesterday morning, disrupting traffic for several hours.

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Published September 02, 2011 at 10:00 am (Updated September 02, 2011 at 10:43 am)

Harbour Road morning traffic diverted after stone wall collapses

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