BVI News

VG fire officers operating under ‘trying conditions’

The Fire Station in The Valley on Virgin Gorda.

Broken windows and doors, defective air conditioning units, and a faulty service vehicle are just some of the issues affecting the Virgin Gorda Fire Station.

There are seven Fire and Rescue officers currently attached to the facility and like many other buildings locally, the station was left in disrepair after the hurricanes.

On a recent visit to the sister island, BVI News observed fire officers sweeping water from the bathroom floor in an effort to prevent any in-house accidents.

Plumbing issues have caused water to drench the facility’s floor daily, so getting rid of the leak, in addition to sitting outside to escape the sweltering heat from inside the station have become daily routines for these fire officers.

This fire officer was captured doing one of his daily tasks of sweeping water from the station.

Internet connectivity and the station’s official telephone lines are also still down five months after the hurricanes.

Persons on Virgin Gorda who dial ‘911’ get connected to emergency personnel on the main island of Tortola.

Tortola operators would then have to call the cellular numbers attached to the Virgin Gorda station to convey information.

BVI News was told that often times residents on the island would have to personally go to the station or to an officer’s residence when there is an emergency and cell phone networks experience glitches.

Fire officers based at the station told BVI News that they have mostly been responding to medical emergencies on the island.

Limited supplies

Before Hurricanes Irma and Maria, the emergency facility had limited resources.

That issue is much worse now, BVI News understands.

Officers claim they work a considerable amount of overtime hours and are often more challenged when the island is crawling with tourists.

Community assisted greatly

While speaking with BVI News today, Chief Fire Officer Zebalon McLean confirmed some of the problems at the Virgin Gorda station and praised the community for assisting the officers there.

He also gave kudos to his team for being ‘the first ones on the ground’ after the hurricanes hit the island.

According to the chief, the Virgin Gorda community reached out to assist his officers in an attempt to improve working conditions at the station when it was battered by the two disasters.

“They have received some contributions from members of the public in terms of a door and a little assistance with doing some odds and ends around the building,” Chief McLean said.

“The operations continued unabated in Virgin Gorda even though the appliances over there is not as robust as it was a few years ago. But, they are still doing their best to manage,” he added.

According to the fire chief, one out of the two ambulances on the island are not operational and the lone fire truck is faulty.

It is an often-uttered sentiment that the sister islands comprising Virgin Gorda, Jost Van Dyke, and Anegada are neglected by local government.

The only fire truck on Virgin Gorda is faulty.

The out-of-order air conditioning unit at the Virgin Gorda Fire Station was thrown out.

A broken pipe causes flooding at the rear end of the station.

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

18 Comments

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  1. VG says:

    Where is the district representative in all this??? AWOL once again

  2. Mick Mars says:

    Buh we gah money to ship in plastic flowers for a frigging man made beach. Help my god, If these fools still in power NEXT year, I gone from here, son of the soil or not, I gone. This is ridiculous!

    These guys play a VITAL role in keeping the island secure and them out here with threadbare equipment and little to no solid communication.

    FC needs to go the Governor to intervene for him like the Police Commissioner did for himself with that junk of money he got for his department. Fireman are just as Vital as Policeman, don’t mind the infrequency of fires or rescue services.

  3. Really? says:

    I must be missing something….you mean to tell me they don’t have no kind of petty cash fund at the fire station to buy some pvc and repair that drain pipe?

  4. Saddened from afar says:

    What the hell! What is the fing government doing to correct the situation? Then they wonder why the islands are viewed as “third world.” The government and the district representative should be ashamed of themselves that such deplorable conditions exist to the point that it has to be broadcast in pictures. Yes, it is definitely time to clean out the “trashy government.” Vote them out!!! Just make sure not to vote in others that will end up being the same.

  5. it's plain to see says:

    The governor/government don’t care about the fire department

  6. LOL says:

    ALL THE REPRESENTATIVE DOING IS REGISTERING NEW YOUNG VOTERS

  7. Builder says:

    the man them working there just as nasty as the place. and look not even a drain pipe they can fix. the all just they sit down all day everyday doin ntn set a lazy a$$$$$$$$$4

  8. VG Resident says:

    Precisely why we should take the $100,000. allocated to Easter Festival and fix our damages to the various buildings. But no, they just want to waste it, as if there is more somewhere else for bringing our facilities back on track. Can’t see a bit further than their noses, if they can see so far at all.

  9. VG gal says:

    Them spend more time out side the fire station minding people business who hand who and so on. 8to5 under the tree who drunk sleeping leave the government aloneq

    • Saddened from afar says:

      VG gal, what does that have to do with the deplorable conditions that exist? Granted, if the firefighters were responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of the facilities, I would be in agreement with you. The discussion put forth is the deplorable conditions that exist, so do not go off on your own tangent. Be mindful of what’s being discuss and stick to it. Debate 101….

  10. VG gal says:

    Them spend most of there time outside do wat.minding naga business gosh man.go there them got the latest melee

  11. Pic worth a 1000 words says:

    Forgive me if I am wrong but the pic shows a building that has been there for years (more than 15). This dilapidation falls on the previous Rep and the current Rep. Maintenance is never done properly in the VI.

  12. Wow says:

    Look at Road Town station ….
    Buildings needs to be condemn. The men can’t even sleep in the Barricks when it rain …. VG is 5 star in comparison to them

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