Initial reports indicate there was structural damage to RC schools from the earthquake of August 21. Several school buildings are old, so structural issues at some of them were exacerbated by the 6.9 quake.
The Catholic News learnt at Santa Maria RC, Penal Rock Road, Moruga, there were large cracks in a stairway leading to the infant department and the main entrance. Cracks were also seen on walls and pillars. At St David’s RC, Kelly Village, Caroni, existing cracks widened and new cracks were seen on the walls of buildings. Vertical cracks from the roof to the ground were visible at the library and computer lab and walls shifted from the corner post in the building. Brazil RC had a crack in the support stand for its water tanks which became “life-threatening” after the earthquake.
At a press briefing hosted by the Education Ministry, Education Towers, Port of Spain on August 24, Education Minister Anthony Garcia voiced concern for the safety of teachers and pupils. He announced engineers from the Ministry of Works would visit schools brought to the attention of the head office by school supervisors. The minister was awaiting a comprehensive report from engineers to subsequently give a national update. However a press conference had not been called up to press time, Wednesday 29.