Mum’s anger after ceiling collapses on her son – ‘He ran out screaming’

Amanda Bilal-Jones has had to vacate her home after a terrifying incident where the ceiling collapsed on her son’s head.

Amanda, 62, claims her residence has been plagued by flooding since August last year, culminating in the recent harrowing event that left her son running in fear, “screaming.”

The water damage has rendered Amanda’s bedroom uninhabitable, forcing her son to sleep on a couch while she occupies his room.

According to Amanda, she reported the flooding to Onward Homes, the housing provider.

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Amanda told the Liverpool ECHO: “I reported more leaks to Onward Homes on December 28. They told me no-one would be out until January 5 (2023) due to Christmas and New Year holidays.

“On the 5th they said they could not carry out the work as there’s only one workman, and it needed two, one to hold the ladder and he was out at another job. They made further arrangements to complete the work on the 11th.

“It was established water was again coming from the guttering as reported by a roofer, who made a report on an emergency call out.

“The water was coming into my bedroom in buckets full”.

Amanda’s son, Doyle, 25, shared his experience, saying: “We had a big bin to collect the leaks. It’s like a big shower, it may as well be raining in the room. I was there with the mop bucket holding the water, running downstairs, putting it in the bath and running back and repeating.”

The conditions reached a climax when the ceiling collapsed on Doyle, causing him to run out of the house. He said: “I didn’t know what was going on and ran out screaming. It was scary.”

Amanda said she has taken legal action against Onward Homes and says there is now fungi growing on the walls and a hole in her bedroom ceiling. She said the house now smells due to the damp.

She said: “I’m so embarrassed by the conditions I’m reluctant to invite friends and relatives to visit.”

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This is not the first time Amanda has faced flooding issues in her home. In August 2022, she was temporarily relocated while repairs were carried out.

However, the previous attempts to address the problem proved ineffective, leaving her feeling unsafe and anxious about the possibility of further collapses. Amanda said there were past instances of flooding and repairs conducted by Liverpool Housing Trust, the predecessor of Onward Homes Limited, which merged in 2018.

In response to the situation, a spokesperson for Onward Homes said: “The ceiling in Amanda’s home has been made safe and she’s been offered temporary accommodation whilst we carry out a thorough investigation and repair.

“Amanda’s home tends to suffer from blocked gutters, so we do monitor and clear the gutters regularly. In this case, it seems a bird nesting in the chimney stack created a temporary blockage that resulted in water backing up and causing damage.

“We apologise for any distress this has caused, and we’re in touch with Amanda to understand what support she needs in the meantime”.

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