Sir Godfrey Gregg
I am renewing my call for the separation of the Fire service from the Police Force in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
The fire on the Gem Star Ferry boat is a prime example of police lighting fire. With the development taking place in the country the Fire Service needs to be spread across the developing spectrum.
These are the areas that fire tenders or fire pumping jeeps need to be stationed. Mesopotamia, Georgetown, Layou, Barrouallie, Chateaubelair, Canouan, Calliaqua, Vermont and I will omit Bequia because the government is not interested in infrastructure on the island.
While Bequia has seen over the last five years a bounce in the development of the tourist product, the Planning Department has not included a water pump in the event of a fire. We live there and have seen when there is a house fire what happened.
Hence the call for education and the establishment of a separate division in the National Security Ministry called the FIRE SERVICE. Yet with the separation, it does not mean every burning building will be saved. There are more benefits having it in place than the opposite.
These are some benefits:
- Educating the public
- Inspection buildings for fire safety
- Putting policies in place for each home to have smoke detectors
- Investigation of possible arson
- Teaching CPR
- First responders to the scene may it be an accident or an alert
There were the fires of the old Treasury Building in the heart of Kingstown that threatened other buildings.
The fire at the Financial Complex
The warehouse fire at Arnos Vale
The Bay Street fire that gutted the Immigration Office and other buildings
And I can go on and on and it is an embarrassment to our Country and a laughing stock to the world. It is time to wake up and get in line with the rest of the world. (We may be better than other countries but we need to up our game to be the best)