Natural Resources

Rockfalls

Date: December 11, 1901

Location: Portugal Cove

Easting: 360500

Northing: 5276400

Latitude: 47° 37' 30" N

Longitude: 52° 50' 00" W

Fatalities: 0

Injuries: 1

Source: Dec 21 1901 Daily News; Portugal Cove-St. Phillip's This Month, #18, Oct 1997, Page 18.

From the Daily News: Facts and Fancies, a letter correcting details of an earlier story. The rock fall hit the property of Jacob Hibbs, 3 furlongs from the wharf on the side of a steep hill. "At 2-3 am on Monday a great mass of rock broke away. One great rock bounded down into the sea, and can be seen lying in 5' of water. A second rock weighing around 2 tons on its 3rd or 4th bounce crashed through the house, knocking away a partition and then exited to lay on other side of road. The rock struck the foot of the bed and crushed Mrs. Hibbs' foot. Her leg was amputated halfway up her calf" The report was by Warwick Smith of Portugal Cove.

"The rock fall took place according to the doctor who amputated her leg, on Dec 16, 1901. Emma and Jacob Hibbs lived at the northmost area of Portugal Cove, past what is now called North Point Road. If you look in the Newfoundland Encyclopedia, Vol.4, page 408, you will see a photo of the Cove taken in 1908 (not 1920's as it says). It was in one of those houses to the far left on the far side of the harbour that Jacob and Emma lived. That area is what we call the Geeze from the old word for Gaze or lookout. There are no houses out that far today but you can still see old foundations if you walk along the path. A resident of North Point tells me that there is a house at the end of North Point Road that is directly in front of a large boulder and he believes an earth berm or something should be built to deflect it if it ever broke loose, but the situation is not taken seriously by the owners". From Robin McGrath

Emma Hibbs

Emma Hibbs, who survived a rockfall; thanks to Robin McGrath for the photograph

 
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