Leaky roof causes concern
River Hebert -
Residents of local seniors' home are fed up with a leaky roof that seems to be getting worse rather than better.
Plastic and buckets hang beneath areas of the ceiling at Hillside Villa, and the water flows every time it rains, according to resident Gretol Stevens.
"We'd just like to see this mess cleaned up," she said. "They have to be able to do something."
Replacement work began on the roof about two weeks ago, according to Stevens, who said the weather was not fit enough for it to be finished. The result has been that, for the past two weeks, it has been leaking worse than it was prior to the work starting.
Ceiling panels and insulation have been removed from a section of the common room, while wires are visible in another leaky ceiling area in the hallway. Leaks also continue in the building's laundry room, which had been a problem area prior to the work.
"You can see the water dripping on the wires, and they had to remove some of the ceiling panels because the insulation was getting so wet," said Stevens. "Everything is wet. It seems to be worse wherever the flat roof is. On the ends with the peaked roof, it's not so bad."
Resident George VanSnick said he is concerned about the air quality.
"It's going to fill full of mold," he said. "I had someone visit me recently, and he told that he could smell it. We don't notice it because we're here every day."
The matter has raised concerns not just with the residents, but with Cumberland South MLA Murray Scott and River Hebert Fire Chief George Rector, who have paid frequent visits to the residence during the past two weeks.
"My big concern is the water running down through those wires," said Rector. "It could short them out and cause a fire. These people are senior citizens, and they shouldn't have to go through this."
The roof is under construction and is in the process of being replaced, according to Cobequid Housing Authority director Frank Carroll.
"There are still some leaks, and those are being addressed as we speak," said Carroll, after visiting the facility on Tuesday.
He said the priority was to get the work done prior to wintertime.
In the meantime, he assured that the residents' safety concerns have been considered.
"We're always concerned about safety," said Carroll. "We had engineers address any concerns there, talked to our staff, and I think we have things under control now."