• JIS News

    Head of the Hanover Fire Brigade, Superintendent Morine Thompson, has raised concern about the number of bush fires occurring in the parish, which have caused some $6.5 million in property damage as at April 12.
    Superintendent Thompson, who was speaking at a meeting of the Hanover Parish Council in Lucea on Thursday (May 11), noted that many of the fires were caused through irresponsible behaviour.
    “It is my opinion that they are being started by persons, whether intentionally or unintentionally. Some amount of farming has been taking place in the hinterland, and farmers of course, they slash and burn to clear the land.
    “Sometimes, the sparks will fly from one area to another and because the place is so dry, it starts a fire, but I genuinely think that most of them are set by persons, because the conditions do not exist for a fire to start spontaneously”, she stated.
    Superintendent Thompson revealed that between January 1 to April 12, the Hanover Fire Brigade responded to approximately 263 fire calls, with 80 per cent of them being bushfires.
    While $6.5 million in property was lost, firefighters managed to save property valued at $600 million.Meanwhile, RADA Parish Manager, Bernard Goffe, who also addressed the meeting, said that the bushfires were devastating the hillsides. He noted that the dry conditions were exacerbating the problem.
    “I do not want to see this parish having the barren look . we cannot allow that to happen, and it is creeping up on us,” he stated.
    Mr. Goffe supported the view that some of the fires were being deliberately set and called for a public education programme involving the police, fire brigade, parish council and RADA, to stop the denudation of the hillsides in the parish.