JIS News

Firefighters at the Morant Bay fire station in St. Thomas are now enjoying improved conditions after some $250,000 was spent to refurbish the facility.
The Ministry of Local Government, Community Development and Sport through the St. Thomas Parish Council provided funding for the project, which included the renovation and tiling of the recreation room, administrative office and the three male dormitories, adjoining the station. Additionally, several damaged zinc sheets on the roof were replaced and windows repaired.
“It gave the station a facelift, although we need to do a lot more work on the roof,” Acting Head of the St. Thomas Department, Clinton Samuels told JIS News, adding that estimates of the additional work were being prepared to be submitted to the relevant authorities.
“This matter is being discussed with the building officer of the Jamaica Fire Brigade and hopefully, he will be doing an estimate to be submitted to the authorities,” he told JIS News, while also mentioning plans to repair the Yallahs Fire station.
He said the fire stations were re-painted on Labour Day (May 23) by volunteers and firemen. Meanwhile, Mr. Samuels said the Department had requested a number of essential items, including stand-by generators, lanterns, jaws of life (to cut metal) and flashlights in preparation for the hurricane season.
Additionally, he said, repairs to one of the two fire trucks serving the parish should be completed by weekend.
Mr. Samuels reported that during last month, the fire units responded to 91 calls, 80 of which were genuine calls, three false alarms, and two for special service.
There were also six fires that were extinguished by residents before the arrival of the unit. He said the estimated loss for the month was some $11. 7 million, while the total risk was over $104 million.
Mr. Samuels said the Department had an on-going public education programme in the parish and the Fire Prevention Division was also willing to give talks at any office, community organization or school, if requested.
He expressed concern that a number of persons still do not know how to prevent fires or the telephone numbers to call in the event of a fire. The telephone numbers of the Morant Bay and the Yallahs fire stations are 982-2268 and 982-5600, respectively.

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