Dry taps in stores and businesses on Roebuck Street have left storeowners and workers frustrated and demanding respite.
Some employers have complained to Barbados TODAY that they have been without water for close to a week, making it uncomfortable for their employees and difficult to conduct business.
The water outage is due to ongoing work on Phase 2 of the Mains Laying Project in Roebuck Street by the Barbados Water Authority (BWU), and the business leaders have appealed to the water company for water tankers to provide relief.
A manager at Shoppers Paradise told Barbados TODAY the business has been without water since last Saturday and he has been forced to carry water from home to the store to facilitate use of the toilets by his staff.
“Any business needs water, especially at this time of the year. Nobody can expect any business to be closed when you wait eleven months for this month. There was a time that they have been notifying us that the water would be out and they would send trucks.
“But the trucks can only give so much water to one business. What about the bathrooms? Supposed a complex has more than 16 bathrooms?” the manager asked.
Meanwhile, Jennifer Haynes of Fashion City said that while she expected the work in progress would cause some discomfort, the persistent water outage was intolerable.
Haynes has called on the BWA to be more accommodating to the needs of businesses in the area.
“Since Monday we haven’t had any water and we ain’t get no vans coming around to distribute water. We can’t use the bathrooms. We are in dire need of water. From home I bring two water coolers with water but that is only so much,” she complained.
One female employee at another store said the situation frustrated her to the extent that she found it difficult to “use the bathroom when there is no water to flush the toilet”.
“I asking them how long this will take and nobody ain’t know nothing. This is since Monday we ain’t got no water. I dealing with money and every time I go to the bathroom I need to wash my hands before and after. We need the water,” said the employee who asked Barbados TODAY not to publish her name or that of the store.
Manager of Engineering at BWA Charles Marville told Barbados TODAY that the matter is expected to be rectified by tomorrow morning, with workmen labouring late into the night. He said the prolonged outage was caused by a number of unexpected technical problems.
“We have had a difficulty but we should be over the worst. The last block of businesses should have their water service restored by morning,” Marville said.