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Urgent action needed to save Pissouri homes

pissouri_housing_initiative-_groupLIMASSOL District Office needs to take immediate action on the land slippage in Limnes area in Pissouri which is affecting dozens of homes, members of the House Interior committee said on Wednesday.

The committee said that the Limassol district office needs to act before a report on the situation is finalised next March, they said.

The slippage is affecting 60 houses, 15 severely, the committee heard. Homeowners have appealed to the government for help as dozens of the houses have sustained structural damage due to the slippage. Damage includes cracks in interior and exterior walls, swimming pools, roads, pavements, footpaths, retaining walls, drains, water pipes and other infrastructure.

Head of the committee, Yiannos Lamaris, said that in some of the houses, damage was so severe, that the owners had to abandon them.

“Due to the problem, some of the houses are moving by 1.5 centimetres per year,” Lamaris said.

The land slippage, the interior ministry had said in an announcement earlier in the year, is mainly due to the underground water, which is close to the surface in combination with the geological conditions of the area. The ground, up to a depth of 16 metres, is made up of loose material that came from past landslides in the wider area, and the ground morphology does not allow the water to escape, hence the area’s name ‘Limnes’ (lakes).

Despite that some work is already done already by the Limassol district office, Lamaris said, the final report is only estimated to be completed by March next year.

“This worries us because before March, comes a full blown-winter and no one knows what tragic results this might bring,” Lamaris said.

He urged the Limassol district office to contact the Pissouri housing initiative group, which was present at the committee’s meeting, and take measures before any lives are lost.

DISY MP, Andreas Kyprianou, urged the district office to visit all houses affected to rule out possible building collapses.

He also called on the state to come up with solutions to stop the land slippage. The interior ministry had said that projects designed to channel rain water away from the area will be expanded and new wells will be drilled to monitor the underground water.

The Animal Party called the meeting productive and called for immediate action on behalf of the government before it’s too late for home owners of the affected area.