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POLITICAL BLOWS THROWN OVER DILAPIDATED FIRE STATION

POLITICAL BLOWS THROWN OVER DILAPIDATED FIRE STATION
October 19
10:21 2018
REPORTER: News Staff, -

Following reports last week of the deplorable condition of the San Ignacio Fire Station, government officials including Minister Edmond Castro, CEO Ruth Meighan, and Mayor Earl Trapp, responded by noting there were efforts underway to upgrade the National Fire Service but did not discuss specific plans for the San Ignacio Fire Station. Castro also recently told the media he was informed that PUP Cayo North East Area Representative, Orlando Habet, who first made the report, had bought a portion of land that was designated for the fire station behind the CET area.

Habet, however, told the Reporter that Castro’s claims were inaccurate. He explained that he had indeed purchased a parcel of land around 2003 in the area but said his parcel does not occupy any of the land demarcated for the fire station. He said he is aware that there is another half-acre behind the demarcated site for use by the fire department. He claimed that Castro has never visited the site and is unaware of the situation at the deteriorating fire station.

 

Habet added that construction was supposed to begin some five years ago as the resident fireman who lived at the location was asked to move, but no construction has been completed at the site. Furthermore, he said the land being considered for the station is now a portion of the land designated for the local ITVET and also a portion of land for the Victor Galvez stadium. Construction at the site has not yet started, however, Habet says firemen frequently clear and maintain the area.

The post which circulated on social media and drew a great deal of criticism showed large holes in the dilapidated structure, housing pigeons and bats. The toilet is reportedly in such a deplorable condition that female fire-fighters are unable to use the restroom. Firefighters also reportedly use water from the toilet tank to wash their hands before flushing the toilet because there is no basin in the station. Concern had also been raised about the amount of working and serviceable fire hydrants in San Ignacio and in areas of Santa Elena in the event of a catastrophic emergency such as the recent fire in Orange Walk which tragically killed three children and an adult.

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