THE EDITOR, Sir:
Please allow me to utilise this forum to express my concerns about the Junction Fire Station. Having identified the issues that have been affecting the services given by the firefighters there, I have conducted research in an attempt to find out if the issues were made known to the relevant authorities and the extent to which communities have been affected.
I have come to the realisation that in 2011, Dave Lindo, a Gleaner writer, made it known to the world the adverse conditions that exist at the station. He, in an article, outlined several problems that the staff at the fire station had to put up with.
Two of the problems are:
a. "Flooding, which occurs mainly from water coming over to the station from a neighbouring property whenever it rains, flooding the station, especially the engine bay";
b. Having only one fire unit to supply water to communities, including Ballards Valley, Bull Savannah, Malvern, Southfield, among other neighbouring communities.
Today, those problems still exist and have worsened, as the station is now operating without a fire unit. This puts a strain on the effectiveness of the services that should be provided by the department and it is very much unsafe for the communities which depend heavily on these services.
Now that the dry season is upon us, it is likely that fires will occur more frequently. The lack of a fire unit in Junction would mean that fire victims would suffer much damage and loss, as they would have to wait some 40 minutes for a fire truck journeying from Black River or Mandeville.
Junction is becoming one of the most developed towns, and it is very unfortunate for sections of the town to be operating without piped water. Because of this setback, it also poses a challenge for the personnel who have to journey to Alpart to supply communities or the station's storage tank with water.
I am imploring the business community and the Ministry of Local Government to supply the firefighters with the necessary equipment to best fulfil their life-saving duties.