Authorities are bringing in additional fire pumps and heavy equipment to help fast-track the process of extinguishing the two-week-old fire at the Cox Heath dump on Tortola.
The additional equipment will arrive at the dump this week, said Chief Fire Officer Zebalon McLean.
Over the last several days, fire officers and heavy equipment operators have been trying to cool the interior of the burning pile to reduce smoke emissions.
And according to the fire chief, his department “continues to make progress” in extinguishing the fire.
While also noting the progress, head of the Department of Waste Management, Greg Massicote reported in a media release this week that the heat from the site has decreased significantly.
He said, because of the reduced heat, “heavy equipment operators have now proceeded to simultaneously cool the pile from the front and the rear.”
While authorities take a more aggressive approach to outing the burning Cox Heath dump, residents in neighbouring communities continue to feel the choking effects of smoke emissions at the site.
Health Disaster Coordinator, Dr Ronald Georges is, therefore, reminding asthmatics and persons with respiratory illnesses to take extra precautions to avoid exposure to the smoke.
Dr Georges issued a special warning for children and the elderly who are exposed.
In the meantime, persons in need of general advice due to health challenges induced by the fire are being told to call government’s help lines for assistance.
“The Road Town Health Centre Helpline can be reached at 852-7681 and the Cane Garden Bay Health Helpline at 852-7770 or 440-1641 or 440-1728. Persons may telephone from 8:30am to 4:30pm on Monday to Friday. Those in need of urgent assistance should call 911 or visit the Pebbles Hospital Emergency Department,” government said.
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