BVI News

Up to a year before fire stations repaired

Virgin Islands Fire and Rescue Service headquarters in Road Town, Tortola.

Local firefighters may have to wait up to a year before their fire stations and equipment are repaired and replenished.

That is according to Minister of Communications and Works, Mark Vanterpool, who said that period may be less.

“We know that since Irma you’ve been working under very difficult constraints. We at the ministry will be working hard with you in the next not-too-distant future over the next couple of months to try to hopefully improve your situation here with your accommodation and also your situation with your equipment,” Vanterpool told fire officers in Road Town this week.

“Over the next three, six, 12 months we hope to seek funding to help you with that and to get you in a better stead. Certainly, your building that you’re in is … quite deplorable and we appreciate the conditions that you are working under. But we will try to see how quickly we can remedy that,” he added.

The minister had visited the Road Town-based fire station to express appreciation to firefighters for their work to put out the blaze at the R&R Malone Complex in Pockwood Pond at the weekend.

While responding to the minister, Chief Fire Officer Zebalon McLean said he recognised Vanterpool’s concern for the fire department.

“I think he (Vanterpool) has shown that even though he might not always be where he’d like to be – because he is a people person – he does care, as do all the other persons in the ministry and we appreciate that fact that we are appreciated,” McLean said.

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14 Comments

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  1. Sky says:

    Wow this is really sad!

  2. Sam the man says:

    over 7 months since Irma hit and yet another 12 months plus to wait for repairs/rebuild ! Just totally unacceptable and frankly not good enough…these firemen provide an essential public service and a few months before the next hurricane season should be equipped with all that’s necessary to fulfill their job including satisfactory work base! I thought Mark Vanterpool was the action man? this confirms he’s more like the “P——r” Hasta La Vista baby – lets just drift on with no urgency,plan or sense of priority…but then he’s a member of the “No Direction Party”….

    • Albion says:

      I am sorry for the firefighters, but what I am really most worried about is the schools. 12 more months for firefighters is bad, but people are not even *talking* about how long it is going to take to get the schools back up. There is no plan or timeline, and no one seems to care that there is no plan or timeline.

  3. L says:

    Not good enough.

  4. rick says:

    pathetic.. govt broke me son

  5. Burning MAD says:

    The safety of our community is in danger. Let’s build a new airport.

  6. ReX FeRaL says:

    Not acceptable. This is a first responder agency. This should have been repaired two months after the storms passed now you going “seek funds” Tell that to a jack donkey and he will kick you silly.

  7. VICKIE says:

    What nonsense I am reading. God forbid if we have a serious disaster the country will burn down. I hope the GOVERNOR see this and read it. Instead of the UK lending the money they should have come in and take over until we get people who have the country and people at heart and who will do better than these who only building up themselves. This ///// PREMIER before he try and fix the most important things he is concentrating on the Air PORT is this man for real or he lost his ////. MR PREMIER please take a good look at this place I guess you still in shock or something else is wrong with you.

  8. Diplomat says:

    Whiskey Tango Foxtrot! Someone please tell me that I misread that fire stations damaged in September 2017 will take up to a year to get repaired. Really! Am I experiencing a bad dream; please wake me. What is government priority(s)? In my view, the priorities should be life safety, property, economic development, operations……etc. Fire prevention, protection, suppression…….etc is a critical life-safety function. Adequate facilities and properly functioning equipment are important to delivering this critical service. Consequently, repairing damaged fire stations should be a top priority.

    Funding appears to be in short suppy to address critical issues. But did government not boast of having a sizable reserve fund to address emergencies? Has that fund been depleted already? Government focus should be on critical infrastructure, ie, roads, water, electricity, sewage, telecommunications, sea ports…..etc and providing basic services.

    Government has a long to-do-list
    and limited funding so it needs to prioritize spending. Additionally, it needs to enhance productivity, cut waste, cut expenses. focus on needs, not wants; review services and adjust as needed, attain value for money, establish more fiduciary responsibility, focus on transparency, accountability and responsibility; focus on good governance. ………etc. It needs to wean people off the public nipple; can the political patronage mentality.

    • Disinterested says:

      Awake olde boy! It is real, not a dream. In a twisted way the hurricanes were devastation yet good for the BVI, for they exposed the it weaknesses, its unpreparedness. Alas, for the last decade or so the BVI seemed to be on auto pilot. The availability of cash shielded its weaknesses, poor/lack of planning…….etc. Hurricane Irma and Maria was the mirror the BVI needed; believe the reflection, the image you see in the mirror. It is not a mirage; it is the real deal. Time is up; time for a peaceful change. Time for effective leadership and strong management. Status in the community does not automatically equates to being an effective leader. It is up to you B V I. So wah yu guin du!

  9. Reality says:

    Simply unbelievable ineptness, if the so called “No Direction Party” went any slower with essential repairs and essential infrastructure schemes they would just stop….can’t believe how slow they are, but not surprised as the NDP just seem to spend time arguing and wasting time squabbling…look at the state of CGB so much for M’s talk for a better future!

  10. One eye rooste says:

    Lord Jesus spare us from another category 12 hurricane if not we get f&%$&

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