Govt to procure new fire boat, skylift & appliances to boost firefighting capabilities

The content originally appeared on: INews Guyana
The Guyana Fire Service’s skylift in action

The Guyana Fire Service conducted a readiness exercise today, which was showcased along Water Street in Georgetown.

The purpose of the exercise was to test the capabilities of the Fire Boat Protector 8 and the Bronto Skylift Hydraulic Platform, which were recently acquired by the Government of Guyana, along with other firefighting equipment, when accessing water from the river to fight structural fires in the city.

The exercise was also aimed at testing and ensuring the effectiveness of firefighters in the event of a major fire in a commercial area.

The Fire Boat

The exercise saw a total of fifty-one (51) personnel, including fourteen (14) officers, three (3) sub-officers, three (3) section leaders, five (5) leading firefighters, and twenty-six (26) firefighters, making use of specialized equipment that included one (1) fire boat, one (1) hydraulic platform, one (1) hose layer, and two (2) water tenders that conveyed water from the river at the Transport and Harbours Wharf to Water Street, Georgetown, covering approximately 0.75 kilometers in distance.

An ambulance and emergency medical technicians were also on standby at the scene in the event of an emergency.

Minister of Home Affairs, Robeson Benn, was present and observed the operation, as were Chief Fire Officer Gregory Wickham and other senior officers attached to the Guyana Fire Service, who oversaw the exercise.

In his remarks, Minister Benn said he wants the Fire Service to up their role in firefighting, particularly by elevating themselves to a high level of readiness and awareness in particular situations, such as the simulation that was conducted today.

He expressed satisfaction with the exercise, noting that it was a commendable proactive approach, which he expects to see more of in 2024.

The Minister said the government will continue to support the Fire Service, as he revealed that another fire boat, a new skylift, and three or four appliances will be procured to boost firefighting capabilities.

Meanwhile, Fire Chief Wickham said he was also satisfied with the outcome of the exercise, which was aimed at showcasing the equipment and their use, as well as testing and ensuring they are in working order in preparation for any eventuality.

The readiness exercise showcased the Fire Service’s commitment to ensuring swift and effective responses to emergencies.

The drill simulated a multi-faceted scenario, incorporating elements like structural fires and rescue operations.

Firefighters demonstrated seamless coordination by utilizing advanced equipment and applying strategic tactics.

The exercise not only validated the service’s existing protocols but also revealed areas for refinement.

Communication channels were put to the test, emphasizing the importance of clear and efficient information flow during crises.

Overall, this readiness exercise stands as a testament to the Guyana Fire Service’s dedication to constant improvement, ensuring that we are well-equipped to safeguard the country in any unforeseen circumstances.