Should I Have Stayed?
I have lived in the Wavecrest Gardens complex my whole life. I work hard to try and make a difference in my community of Far Rockaway. I have loved living in Wavecrest Gardens over these 28 years of my life, and when people said bad things about living here I’ve contested them.
However, today I stand a fool in my own words. I stood almost knee high in water, water that flooded an outdoor parking lot. As I looked into the windows of my 2006 Maxima, I could see water on the floor. A towel that had fallen on the floor just yesterday now was floating. How could Wavecrest allow this to happen?
All it would have taken was a phone call to my apartment, “Hello
Mr. Weaver, the parking lot seems to have a lot of water, you should move your car.“ That’s all, give me a chance to save my car. However, when I came out of my house at 12:30 p.m., I ran into water that covered my toes, then my ankles, and topped off below my knees. Why wasn’t I called. I was called when my car was parked outside of the lot, telling me that I had to move it. I was called when my alarm wouldn’t stop going off. But I wasn’t called when the parking lot was flooding and my car could have been saved.
I walked over to the security booth, barefoot and mad. Twice, asking for answers. Not yelling, not screaming, not even raising my voice. I even joked with some of the security agents there; I finally talked with the head of the security task force on the second time there. I asked him, “What am I to do tomorrow?” He told me that he was writing up a report and that he would give it to the general manager on Monday. I said that I have work tomorrow and that I need answers today, please just give me a number to someone I can call for answers today, I begged. He told me that it’s Sunday, there is no one to call. He further told me that there is nothing that he could do. I asked again how do I get to work, he told me that I should take either public transportation or rent a car.
During our 15 minute conversation, he also informed me that this was an act of nature and that Wavecrest probably would not be responsible for the damages because it was an act of nature. So I asked him about his security force. I asked him, how was it possible for a parking lot to fill up with water and no one knew about it, or even called to warn residents. He told me that the two agents on last night were dealing with other issues. He then went to check the schedule and found that there weren’t two agents on, but three plus a supervisor. I asked him how it was possible on a Saturday night, in Rockaway, when we have shootings two blocks over every other weekend to only have three agents on? He told me that, that is all he had scheduled for that night.
I am so upset and I feel powerless in my own home. This is a place that I have called home my whole life. I want to start my family here. I want to be here and share all my own memories with my family and neighbors; some may say that it’s a sad thing to want to stay in Rockaway, but I love it here, I always have. But today I bowed my head in shame. For a place that boasts about having “24-Hour, On-Site Security Utilizing State-of-the-Art Technology,” how could this happen. I thought security agents were supposed to patrol the area and keep us safe. If they were patrolling last night, how was it possible for the parking lot to get filled with water? Why didn’t I get a phone call and not have to walk out to see my car underwater? The water was deep enough to swim in ... I swam in it. The water covered my head laying down. I need answers, please I feel so helpless and discouraged.
Was the head of security correct, is this an act of nature and therefore my responsibility?
Am I going to have to pay for the damages?
Will I be reimbursed for damages if I pay for them?
Will I be reimbursed for public transportation or renting a car?
Is this really all my fault for staying in Wavecrest Gardens after everyone told me to leave Far Rockaway?