Mosquito boss immortalized in new hanger

| 08/05/2013

Cessna-in-mangrove-1-700x466_1.jpg(CNS): Dr William Petrie, the director of the Mosquito Research Control Unit (MRCU), has become the eponymous hero of its new facility, and while the mosquito boss was immortalized in the new hanger, long term MRCU employee Janet MacMillian was honoured with the pesticide building being named for her. Juliana O’Connor-Connolly, who has responsibility for the MRCU,announced the names of the buildings at the opening of the aircraft facility, which includes a 12,402-square foot hangar, a 2,787- square foot custom-built pesticide store and a 1,600 square-foot evaporation basin and car park facility last month.

O’Connor-Connolly named the main MRCU building after Petrie for his tireless work in the eradication of mosquitoes and MacMilliam, who has been employed with MRCU since 1967, was honoured for her complete dedication to the department. Both said they were extremely honored and thrilled by having a building that will bear their respective names.

The facility cost CI$5.8 million and was started in 2008 but went through some hard times including a change of contractor. Hadsphaltic was awarded the original tender in 2008 but went into liquidation in June 2009. The project was then re-tendered in August 2010 by the Central Tenders Committee and a new contract was signed with Edgewater Development on 20 April 2011 and work commenced 31 May of that year.

Despite the difficulties of completing the project in austere times, O’Connor-Connolly said the upgrade was much-needed as it would bring significant improvements to the efficiency and effectiveness of mosquito control operations.

“The new facility will considerably improve the MRCU's ability to eradicate mosquitos and protect the residents of these islands. It will also assist in keeping the mosquito planes safe during a hurricane," she said.

The hangar is large enough to house both aircrafts and is being built to hurricane safety standards. Reinforced hangar doors (70ft wide) have rubber flaps between them to stop rainwater. The hangar floor has a trench drain at the entrance and a new concrete roof is a major improvement over the zinc roof on the old hangar. The new building is also farther from the runway.

It has a built-in fire suppression system using foam retardant. The building includes a workshop for aircraft maintenance, and a secure restricted-access store for aircraft parts. The MRCU facility has a generator, which means that operations can continue after a natural disaster.

The custom-built pesticide store is also built to hurricane standards to protect stock. The store is large enough to hold sufficient quantities of supplies and to store them in a safe and efficient manner.

Petrie said the facility will greatly improve working condition for the staff and protection for government’s investment in the event of a major storm. “This multi-purpose facility provides better working conditions and will improve operations as parts and the much improved workshop is all in one location. This is also the case with the pesticides, which will now be stored in this building, rather than off-site as before. We can save on operational costs, because we will no longer have to rent other facilities to for aircraft maintenance or for storage,” he added.

“From now on there will be no need to taxi the planes to Bobby Thompson Way and park them there during a storm; this sight I hope never to see again,” he said, notding that the old hangar was built in 1970/1971.  “Many years later a shelter was erected to provide some measure of cover for a second aircraft. But the original hangar was badly damaged during Hurricane Ivan and since that time international requirements would have necessitated a rebuilding at some stage anyway,” he explained.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    This naming things after people fetish has to stop. 

  2. Anonymous says:

    No disrespect to Mr. Petrie, however this facility should be named after Dr. Giglioli the man whoes life's work and research in Cayman changed all our lives and who founded MRCU and thewas  entire infrastructure we see today. Dr. Giglioli is the true hero here and deserves the honourable recognition of Government in perpetuity for the DOE and Govt. removed his name from the DOE building. Why was the DOE building name changed and the honour to Dr. Giglioli removed? Mr. Petrie has just done his job he was employed to do, Dr Giglioli was a trailblazer and world authority in the research and control of Mosquitos and has left a lasting legacy that has made our world and all over the world a better place to live.

    • Anonymous says:

      Oh what happen. you dont realize that Dr Giglioli cant vote.

    • Anonymass says:

      When MRCU left the DOE building the Giglioli name went with him to their new building. Drive down Red Gate Road some time, past the Water Authority, and its their on their building (last time I went that far).

    • Anonymous says:

      07.59- good thought but I think we should save any naming for the day someone works out how to get rid of Bush. Mr. Baines and the Preosuctor are currently in the running, lets see if they have the legs to do it. The electorate is currently running 3rd, they could leap into first place on polling day if they do the right thing.

    • WHAT !!!!!!! says:

      I thought the MRCU building next to Water Authority is named after Mr Giglioli already. Tell me what more do you want his name on each mosquito too.

  3. Jacky Boatside from Oldbush says:

    This woman is a real joke, i guess she will be renaming the capital of C/Brac  after her driver next. Mann this could only happen here in this little place!!!! when you combine a donkey with a mule you get a Jackass boy this place is full up bad???

  4. PNA Highjinks says:

    Not sure I'd want a pesticide storage area named after me. JOCC forgot to name the mosquito planes after someone. Oh, and each door on the hanger should be named. The ceiling tiles too. Next every government vehicle will have to be named after someone. Stop the nonsense and deal with the real issues that the country is facing. PNA = Please Never Again.

    • Anonymous says:

      Oh, can you tell e if the new white van that julie is using to transport people if its hers personally or Cayman Island Governments? If its for us then I have to get a drive in it too to her meetings.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Can we know more about the pesticides used, regulations of usage and any long term studies in place on the health effects of people on this island exposed to these pesticides?

    • Anonymous says:

      8.25 I don't believe 'pesticides' is the right term anymore. A hormone specific to the larvae is sprayed into the water to prevent them maturing into adults. Call MRCU and find out.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Should have named it (Karl & Robert), they spend more time down there than anyone else in MRCU working away!

  7. Diogenes says:

    The voters of Cayman Brac will get her back into the LA tho, then its anyones guess as to who is going to form the next governmentand how many deals they have to cut to get a majority.  She may well be back in Cabinet.  

    • Anonymous says:

      Maybe only the UDP will take her on, and she knows that too thats why she is being kind to them. Although we understand she was tring to cut a deal with another group to be speaker of the house, but the Public dont forget that once before she drove the public out of the LA Gallery. We dont forget

  8. Anonymous says:

    No disrespect to Dr Petrie and Ms Macmillan, but JOCCO seems to be getting desperate in her attempts to remain in government. Naming a hangar and a pesticide store (you couldn't make this up!) after two (no doubt) worthy civil servants will not get her another ministerial position.

    • Anonymous says:

      THey dont vote in the Brac so I dont know how much good that will do her.


      If a Bracker had donated a yard of cement or fill maybe she would have named it after them – too late now.


      I can see it now, the Watson-Scott-Martin mosquito centre.

      • Anonymous says:

        I dont think she will name anything after SCOTT. Her house is on Sammy Scotts property, also the W Place park, then the house in back of the Park was for her Grand Uncle Scotty where she was born, also the new road being constructed on the Bluff by her Grand Uncle Sammy Scotts property. They cant vote for her either as they have deceased.

    • SSM345 says:

      Next up…. renaming the Brac?

    • Anonymous says:

      We should be naming public lavories after Mr. Bush and Mr. Tibbetts, because they were both full of crap.