BVI News

Incinerator repaired! Will operate in 12-hour shifts starting today

The incinerator at Pockwood Pond on Tortola.

The incinerator at Pockwood Pond is finally operational and is set to begin 12-hour shifts starting Wednesday, January 29.

Minister of Health Carvin Malone told BVI News the incinerator was declared operational after undergoing repairs and subsequent certification checks by equipment manufacturers, Consutech Systems LLC.

“Last Thursday we were able to run tests, just to see what mechanical issues we would have encountered. Fortunately, we were able to avoid any major mechanical issues which would have resulted in the prolonged closure of the incinerator. But the minor issuers which were encountered have been repaired and we are now full steam,” Minister Malone stated.

He also warned that due to the incinerator going more than a year without being active, a number of other mechanical issues may arise during its operation. He said this will result in brief closures of the plant while the issues are promptly rectified.

12-hour shifts to turn to 24-hours until untreated waste is gone

Malone, in the meantime, said the 12-hour shifts in which the incinerator will operate is only a temporary measure.

“Once we get the light fixtures reinstalled — because some of the wirings had burnt out and we are getting those repaired now — we will be able to run a 24-hour shift,” the minister said.

“The furnace has been reactivated, the mechanical issues have been examined and fixed, and we are now on 12-hour shifts and we will be moving to 24-hour shifts until the body of untreated waste has been incinerated,” he added.

Random fires will become a memory

He also said the occasional outburst of fires at the waste facility is expected to stop now that the incinerator is back up and running.

“This will be good news for us because we will be able to avoid the direct burial of untreated waste, which as you know from time to time would cause spontaneous combustion with no fault of our own. And in so doing, we would reduce the fires, the smokes and the hazardous conditions that are caused by this,” Malone said.

Scrubber to come

While no timeline was given as to when a scrubber will be installed on the incinerator, Minister Malone said plans are being worked on. He further said more information will be shared at a later date.

“We are in conversations again with the scrubber so we can have a cleaner emittance of the vapour, instead of smoke coming out from the chimney,” he said.

Long history of problems

The BVI has been without an operational incinerator since November 2018, which has sparked many concerns within the territory among residents following a number of fires which resulted in smoke affecting nearby communities.

Following a large outcry from impacted citizens, government disbursed approximately 400 filtered masks to residents as a temporary solution in July 2019. They also erected nearly half-dozen air quality monitoring stations in affected communities.

Copyright 2020 BVI News, Media Expressions Limited. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed.

14 Comments

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  1. vip heckler says:

    The bodyguards were top priority after the VIP won the government. This problem with the incinerator could’ve been solved months ago.

    Like 11
    Dislike 11
    • Too True says:

      The problem is not solved until the scrubber is installed. The scrubber has been missing for over ten years. Please, this is a priority for our health.

      Like 22
  2. Smoke says:

    Thanks but the smoke coming out from the chimney is the same as when it is coming up from burning on the ground. Our homes become infused with the fumes. Everything, clothes, body, bedding a nasty, nasty smell. This stuff is messing with our health. The scrubber is urgent.

    Like 15
  3. 3D massive says:

    We cant eat no fruits from our fruit trees…We cant drink no water from our cisterns…We cant eat no fish caught in our waters…We are not healthy bottom line…Fraser We need to sue !!!

  4. Hello says:

    1. The fires were not spontaneous.
    2. Don’t celebrate, we still need a scrubber.
    3. Handling waste like a third world country.

    Like 18
  5. free advice says:

    Install a back up plant on the other bed that you recently removed the old incinerator from to avoid more hiccups in the future

  6. To late says:

    There seems to be a lot of cancers popping up in West End these days.

  7. WOW says:

    I thought there would be more comments commending the Government on finally getting this fixed because there were so many negative comments against the government when it was not working and the smoke was killing us for the past 2 years.

    Like 3
    Dislike 8
    • Be Aware says:

      That is because the issue remains.The issue has NOT been finally fixed. A Scrubber is required and for the past ten years it had been coming. Repeat..The issue of toxic smoke remains!!!!

      Like 9
      Dislike 1
      • 007 says:

        The plant was not functional for over a year and is finally fixed and can now actually carry out it’s sole function which is to get rid of garbage. It will greatly reduce the smoke in the area. Yes there will be smoke until the scrubber is installed but it won’t be nearly as bad as the open burning. A little gratitude goes a long way.

        Like 4
        Dislike 5
  8. Windy says:

    The dump is still polluting us. We dont have the whistleblower law. The $7.2 is still missing. We don’t have new jobs. Some schools still broke. Where all our money going?

    Like 4
    Dislike 2
  9. well sah says:

    twist it and turn it we are screwed the end result from that machine is so deadly
    its call bottom ash or fly ash.The Min.Malone and the whole health dept. are bringing a deadly smell and vibes to de people

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