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Brigade to set up bush fire warning system

Published:Wednesday | July 31, 2019 | 12:44 PM
Daryl Vaz (left), Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, and Desmond McKenzie (centre) Minister of Local Government and Community Development, hand over computers to Stewart Beckford, Commissioner, Jamaica Fire Brigade at a ceremony on Wednesday, July 31, 2019 – Ian Allen photo.

Andre Williams, Staff Reporter

The Jamaica Fire Brigade is to establish a bush fire warning index.

The Ministry of Local Government today handed over 33 computers specially equipped to track, manage and record bush fires.

“The computers will have special software that will allow for effective database management and will also be supported with the global positioning system units that will assist with providing identification of these bush fire locations,”said Daryl Vaz, Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation with responsibility for the Land, Environment, Climate.

“These desktop computers that are being presented to the fire brigade today are part of the ongoing efforts to furnish this critical government department with additional infrastructure. The Caribbean Development Bank must be commended for their part in making the funds available for this initiative and we look forward to the fulfilment of the project objectives over the next few months,” Vaz added.

He pointed out that initiative comes at a time when the country is experiencing hot, dry conditions.

Fire brigade commissioner, Stewart Beckford, disclosed that Jamaica has recorded over a 1000 bush fires since the start of the year.

Beckford said that he expects that the warning system should be operational before the end of the year.  

“There is another phase of the project to be rolled out, but it is my hope that it would be in a short period of time. My understanding is that the project should come to an end by the end of November so I expect that by that time we would be up and running fully with the system,” Beckford told reporters.

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