In his remarks, Minister McKenzie said the acquisition will significantly improve the capacity of the Fire Brigade to respond to emergencies. The fleet of the Jamaica Fire Brigade has been improved with the acquisition of six new emergency response vehicles valued at $385 million.The units include two firefighting boats, two fire engines and two pumper tankers. The firefighting boats are to be assigned to the parishes of Kingston and St. James, to serve the western part of the island.Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Hon. Desmond McKenzie handed over the units during a ceremony held at the fire boat station, Newport East, Kingston, on April 16.In his remarks, Minister McKenzie said the acquisition will significantly improve the capacity of the Fire Brigade to respond to emergencies.He noted that the units represent a major investment in the Fire Brigade and are part of the Government’s continuous effort to improve the social services of the country.The Local Government Minister also informed that $22 million will be spent on facilities to house the boats and the individuals who will be operating them. Of this amount, $14 million will be spent to erect facilities in Montego Bay, while $8 million will be spent in Kingston.“This Administration is not only talking about improving the capabilities of the Jamaica Fire Brigade; we are putting the money into the (agency),” he said.Meanwhile, Minister McKenzie said a sum of $189 million has been set aside in the 2018/19 Budget for the purchase of more fire trucks.He also informed that through a partnership with the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF), six additional trucks will be added to the fleet of the Jamaica Fire Brigade shortly.In addition, he said discussions are under way on measures to strengthen the services of the Brigade, adding that a new fire station is to be constructed in the Corporate Area.“There are 33 stations across the country. Seven stations are presently without adequate working units, and it is the intention of this Administration, by the end of the next financial year, that all fire stations across the country will have at least one good working fire unit to deliver service to the people of this country,” he said.For his part, Commissioner of the Jamaica Fire Brigade, Raymond Spencer, expressed his appreciation for the units, adding that they will boost the services of the Brigade. The fleet of the Jamaica Fire Brigade has been improved with the acquisition of six new emergency response vehicles valued at $385 million. Story Highlights The units include two firefighting boats, two fire engines and two pumper tankers. The firefighting boats are to be assigned to the parishes of Kingston and St. James, to serve the western part of the island.
zoom The container shipping industry will be focussed on the deployment of ultra large container vessels (ULCV) during the year as around 40 of such ships are expected to join the fleet in 2018, according to BIMCO.53 ships larger than 13,500 TEU are scheduled for delivery, however, the number is expected to be slighty less as some owners might opt to push deliveries of their ships. In 2017, 55 ships of the same size were scheduled for delivery, but only 43 were handed over.During 2017, owners and investors were busy in the second-hand market. The year was in fact the busiest on record as 297 ships changed hands, valued at USD 4,178 million, BIMCO cited data from VesselsValue. Panamax ships were in demand, more due to price than anything else, with 93 ships changing hands in total.Purchasing prices were equal to the demolition values of many of the ships, meaning there was little downside risk from the purchase. Since mid-2017 both demolition prices and second-hand values have gone up.A 2009-built, 4,275 TEU panamax ship was valued at USD 13.7 million in July 2016, USD 5.6 million in January 2017 and USD 10.9 million in January 2018. At the same time, the demolition value of the same ship was USD 4.6 million, USD 5.6 million and USD 8.1 million. Meaning that deals done at January 2017 prices were equal to demolition values.Regarding the overall demand in the container shipping industry, BIMCO said it wxpects the demand to be lower than in 2017, but still high enough to potentially improve the fundamental market balance.Demand is forecast to grow by 4.0-4.5% against a fleet growth of 3.9% in 2018.