While the debate over the pace of development on St. John continues, a piece of the controversial luxury condominium resort Sirenusa hit Jimmy Powell’s residence a little too close to home — landing on the porch of his home.
On Wednesday afternoon, June 20, around 2:30 p.m. two pieces of a six-foot-wide concrete man hole barrel careened out of the Sirenusa site and down the steep hillside near Serendip.
One piece of the concrete smashed into a Sirenusa employee’s truck — apparently totaling the recently-painted vehicle — while the other had a longer journey.
The six-foot-wide concrete slab bounced down the road, over a retaining wall, down concrete steps and finally came to rest on the lower porch of Powell’s home, leaving a trail of damage in its wake.
Crushed Steps, Holes in Wall
The concrete steps to Powell’s home were smashed, there are two holes in his home’s concrete wall and the slab itself narrowly missed one of Powell’s daughters who was sitting on the porch.
“We have no idea how this happened,” said Powell’s daughter, Nancy Powell. “Someone was there on the porch and she had to run to get away from this huge piece of concrete. It came with so much force it went right over the cliff and the retaining wall.”
“There was no rain or anything, it just came out of nowhere,” Nancy Powell continued.
It was another stroke of luck that no one in the family had their cars parked near the top of the stairs, where they surely would have been destroyed, explained Nancy Powell.
“My dad’s taxi bus is usually parked there,” said Nancy Powell. “As a matter of fact everyone in my family parks in that driveway. It’s lucky that my mother’s car and my sister’s weren’t there too.”
The concrete slab was a man hole barrel, which broke off a lift swing, according to Sirenusa project manager Fran Woods.
Broken Lift Swing Sends Slab Flying
“The long and short of it is that we were handling a man hole barrel and the lift swing broke,” said Woods. “As a result, it landed on one of our employee’s vehicles and one other section came off and landed on the gentleman’s land.”
“We are sorry it happened and we immediately sent people down there,” Woods continued. “We’re repairing any damage to his steps and home.”
Sirenusa workers take every step possible to ensure the safety of the neighborhood, Woods added.
“We take steps every day to prevent things like this from happening, but obviously they can happen” he said. “It is unfortunate.”
Employees of the luxury condominium project have also recently started work connecting their 47 condos to the public sewer system and closed the road in the area on June 19.
“It should be duly noted as well that the road was shut off with flag men on both ends,” said Gene Skoff, Sirenusa owner Carlo Marzano’s representative. “We took every step to ensure safety in the area.”