A heart wrenching and hectic experience – Dr Kenneth Darroux


One of the devastating landslides which occurred at Petite Savanne
One of the devastating landslides which occurred at Petite Savanne

Parliamentary Representative for Petite Savanne Dr Kenneth Darroux has described his time in the community as heart wrenching and hectic.

Petite Savanne was hard hit by Tropical Storm Erika. Five persons were confirmed dead while 15 are missing and presumed dead. The community has since been evacuated.

Dr Darroux spent three days in the community where he led the medical team and treated those in need of medical attention.

“It has been really hectic in the past three days,” he told DBS Radio on August 30.

He said it was particularly difficult to see his relatives and friends being unearthed and identified.

“Just having to make the call to as many relatives as possible in the area, just to tell them a quick good bye…and just to bury them it’s just heart wrenching.

“I honestly never broke down until this morning especially as I was cut off from the outside world. Really we were not seeing any movement in and out of Petite Savanne, so I really didn’t want to leave but I had to leave and I am hoping by first flight to head back up there to at least be on the ground and to ensure that the people are evacuated and as I said what ever support I can for them.”

According to the Minister, prior to the evacuation notice given by the Prime Minster, he had already advised residents to begin packing their belongings to get out of the village.

He said he had to swim, take the boat and then walk to reach his home.

“I am back in civilisation because we were cut off from the rest of the country in terms of self-service so there was no way I could find out what happening so I had to find a way to leave, not that I wanted to leave my people to be honest, but I had to get out to at least coordinate things from out there.”

Dr. Darroux also mentioned that five bodies were recovered and 15 persons are still missing and presumed dead. Additionally, there was some talk about two or three persons who visited the area but this has so far not been confirmed, he said.

He informed that the bodies were buried on the spot.

“I mean most of them have been decomposed. One was found out in the water, three unearthed in one location and another one was unearthed immediately after the disaster and was lying there so I really had to take the decision as the medical doctor on site and of course the family’s blessings to really find a proper spot to have their families buried.”

Dr. Darroux said he plans to return to the community on the first flight out.

Petite Savanne slide 2

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  1. uk resident
    September 2, 2015

    at last PM skerrit decided to meet the opposition leader GOD must be please.

  2. Anthony P. Ismael
    September 1, 2015

    Moving forward, we need to examine where homes are constructed. Specific areas should be deignated for buidling in the affected areas. We can no longer build in valleys, close to rivers and below mountains as we once did.

  3. September 1, 2015

    I have many friends in that community, I wish all, god blessing and the strength to carry on.

  4. Brian Dariah
    September 1, 2015

    God bless domonica n its people im stlucian but my heart felt for all family domonicans

  5. The Real Facts
    August 31, 2015

    It is shocking but then again it is a disaster which took everyone by surprise.
    I have considered that without realizing it, the rain was falling heavily in the interior of the island. It does not even have to be a tropical storm for the river to cascade down as if it is angry, overflowing and high. I have seen it happen; not in Roseau. If someone did not alert us that “the river is coming” and we had time to bail out of the water, a few of us could have been swept away by the overflowing water.
    In this case, the rain fell heavily and softened the ground which led to soil erosion, landslides and avalanches.
    The poor people. The shock of it all when it occurred and they were helpless.
    My deepest sympathy to the people of Petite Savanne who lost loved ones.
    Those who also lost their belongings and are now living with a certain degree of anxiety and stress, you will be helped.
    May the souls of the departed rest in peace. Amen!

      September 1, 2015

      country people know how to avoid overflowing rivers/floods (river coming). As children you always look in the mountain to see if its raining or if the color or level of the water is changing. From some reports there was a small earthquake that shook homes that night in Petite Savanne. The combination of the rain and small earth quake may have caused these massive landslides. I’m not a geologist or Volcanologist in my opinion the combination of a small earth quake with the rain caused this disaster. They should take a close look a the volcano in the area and review seismic activity. Just my humble opinion.

      • The Real Facts
        September 2, 2015

        So there was an earthquake, be it a small one. Earthquakes shake and cause the land to move which could have caused landslides. Prior to this, approximately a week or two ago, an earthquake was felt in D/ca. Then the amount of rain which fell softened the soil.
        I am wondering if that area could be tested to confirm that an earthquake (and of course the heavy rain) caused the landslides.
        My heart and prayers go out to all Dominicans who are affected and those who loss their lives.

  6. out of south city
    August 31, 2015

    This is really touching. I have always said that religion and politics have divided us as a people. We ought to realise that we are a family and should treat and continue to treat each other with respect and dignity. None of us is better that the other and we all need each other. We must not only come together when disaster strikes but we must continue to unite as sisters and brothers and stop the name calling and disrespecting on social media. We are one race of people who should continue to look out for each other on a daily basis.
    I applaud Dr. Darroux for the love and concern of the people and for doing what he felt was necessary to be done.
    At such a time like this, we don’t have to continue to divide the country with politics but to praise the Prime Minister and Mr. Linton in what ever decisions they see fit for the country.
    We need to stand behind them and support them.

    • The Real Facts
      September 2, 2015

      Some people allow religion and politics to divide them. The problem is lack of respect for the feelings of others could do it.
      For instance when people write, according to their feelings, uncomplimentary matters against the Catholic Church and its devotions, expect Catholics to be upset and defend their faith.
      When some make derogatory statements against the PM and his government expect their supporters to be angry and to stand up for them.
      Our Lord Jesus Christ taught us The Golden Rule: “Do unto others as you have them do unto you.” How many practice this godly virtue? This is the cause of the problem. There are those who cannot live at peace and will not allow others to live at peace. Some love to pick fights – arguments. It appears it is a trait of theirs which they love doing and to inflict hurt.

    • The Real Facts
      September 2, 2015

      We must be fair. Some need to learn, we are free to agree or disagree. After all is said, the discussion should end in an amicable manner; not in enmity.
      Who is right and who is wrong? In certain instances, there are people who are correct and there are others who are wrong. When they are wrong they must admit it.
      Generally, people are opinionated. However, they must consider others have their opinion and may disagree with them. There are some who will hate others because of their opinion or for nothing at all. They hate them for their religion; they hate them for their political preference.
      I have noted that some do not possess communication skills. In that, we must also respect others, their faith and political preference. People have feelings and can be hurt. We must think of others; not only of ourselves.
      Unless people are accorded their due right and dignity, no one will be able to live in peace. It takes two. Some need to learn that.

  7. Donald Shillingford
    August 31, 2015

    We as natives of the west indies should send what is necessary (ie. food ,clothing, medical supplies and non-perishables items) to families residing within the Common wealth of Dominica during this disastrous moment. The government of Dominica should also implement a periodic duty free imports/exports until the island shows a level of recovery/improvement.

    • Shelley McIntyre
      September 2, 2015

      DARDA is committed to helping Dominica rebuild and recover in the aftermath of Tropical Storm Erika. We are asking for your help with a monetary donation to our GoFundMe account, which has been endorsed by the Government and Prime Minister’s Office as an official collection point. All funds received will directly benefit disaster recovery efforts in Dominica. http://www.gofundme.com/nj2yvn8k. Visit DARDA.org for more information.

  8. block 44
    August 31, 2015

    thanks docter darroux for being our sanja gurpta in a time of need more respect to you jah bless.

  9. Anthony P. Ismael
    August 31, 2015

    This is devestating news.

  10. Peace
    August 31, 2015

    Heart wrenching

  11. August 31, 2015

    I am reading this with tears in my eyes. Oh lord who are we on this earth ? This is really heart breaking. All of our days are numbered. Just wish we could decide how do we want to leave this earth.

    • Jimmy
      August 31, 2015

      This is the reason why we need to treat each day as if it is our last day on this earth, that is, we need to be prepared to meet our Maker!

      • The Real Facts
        August 31, 2015

        And to treat others with dignity and respect due to them as created children of God and part of the family of man.

    • alil caasy
      August 31, 2015

      A men to that

    • The Real Facts
      August 31, 2015

      As it is stated in Holy Scripture: “What is man . . .?”
      Our words must not be mere words and we soon forget about them.
      Only God knows the number of our days, what will happen to us in the future and what our end will be like and when. We must always keep this in mind.
      If only some people consider this, they would ever be loving and kind, right on this Website. Some will learn and others will not. The latter will continue with their old self, making no changes, as if they will live forever with no impediment and illness.

  12. Jackie
    August 31, 2015

    Dr Darroux has displayed fortitude of character. You are a true HERO.
    Your people are lucky to have had you in their midst.
    Shine on

  13. Nacinimod
    August 31, 2015

    What a tragedy.

    Dominicans, let us get down on our knees and pray for those who perished as well as the survivals who are now homeless.

  14. fellow dominicanS
    August 31, 2015

    :cry: :cry:

  15. Anonymous
    August 31, 2015

    It would be good to see a before and after, for persons like myself who do not know what it looked like before

  16. gretta h
    August 31, 2015

    May God bless you dr Darroux. Almighty God had already chosen your mission, even before you knew it yourself. He has chosen you. You are a hero is all sense of the word. You have done well. More than beyond your call. On behalf of the people of d/ca I say thank you sir, for an excellent job. Hope that you find the time to take a bow. You have done well.

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