Fire fighters wrestle with another dump fire

| 17/08/2014

(CNS): Fire crews were busy battling yet another major blaze at the George Town dump on Sunday morning after some 5000 square feet of the main landfill ignited. Officials from the fire service said that the fire was reported to 911 at around 11:15 am. Domestic fire crews were sent immediately to the dump and found a visible fire with flames covering roughly 5000 square feet. A considerably blaze, crews attacked it aggressively to prevent it from becoming a more massive fire. Although the fire was brought under control within an hour and a half with the help of the DEH excavator operator overturning the burning debris.Crews remained on the site throughout Sunday and into Monday morning and were expected to remain there until the risk of reignition abated.

The latest dump blaze comes hot on the heels of a blaze less than one week ago that occupied firefighters for several days and is now part of a regular occurrence, despite the recent investment in new equipment a commitment to purchase the necessary marl to prevent the dump from igniting. 

With a holistic solution still some two years away as a result of the need to follow the process set down by the UK and adopted into local legislation, the minister with responsibility for the dump has committed to dealing directly with the immediate equipment and resource issues, however, despite the historic problems associated with the dump the fire problems have intensified in recent months. 

Officials confirmed that firefighters would stay at the landfill to continue saturating all of the smoldering area until the fire is completely extinguished and were understood to have done so thoroughout Sunday night.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    What CIG doesn't understand is that they are committing crime here,crime against people's right to breath  clean air. All people with cancer, autoimmune and autonomic disorders must unite and ask CIG why in the world they got it in.  First lawsuit  might be in order.

    How about false advertisement? The stench from the Dump is not mentioned in Dept.of tourism advertisements.

    • Jonas Dwyer says:

      For goodness sake somebody do some thing, we can't take it no mote. Minister Bodden, beware of the Health hazard implications here, it not nice Sir.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I wonder why business community remains inactive here. The Dump’s stink and toxic fumes certainly affect tourism, purchases of real estate; health of the employees of the foreign businesses, who came here unaware of the Dump and its hazard to health

    I am not talking here about CI residents. They should have started organized protests long time ago.

  3. xxx says:

    It is obvious to me that many of you do not understand how a Fire Department works. Yes, they have a lot of down time and this is not unique to Cayman.  Fire Departments worldwide have downtime.  When there is downtime it just means some family is not losing their home or business.  As far as being overstaffed, how nice would it be if your house is on fire there is not enough personnel to handle the fire.  Fires do not happen according to a schedule therefore there needs to be enough trained firefighters on duty for each shift.   Each firefighter is limited in how many times they can enter a burning building.  Each firefighter has a specific amount of oxygen to use at a fire.  Firefighters do not work 8-5 .  Most shifts are 12-24 hours.  Know your fire department before you presume to comment on things you have no clue about.  Each time they handle a fire they risk their lives for YOU and ME.  We should be thanking them instead of criticizing constantly.

    • Anonymous says:

      But 20:28 the statistics show they actually have to fight very few fires every single year so we could indeed do with less than the very large number we have now on this small island and on tiny Cayman Brac. It's ridiculous.

      • Anonymous says:

        Aerodrome  Planes   got it?


      • Anonymous says:

        For information sake Cayman Brac have 4 guys on a shift and the twin otter comes in with about 20 people, what do you think will happen if that airpcraft crashes with 20 people and 4 firemen working..Feel big now?

      • Anonymous says:

        Where are the statistics that show this ?  Do you realize they are also required to respond every time a fire alarm goes off and check the entire premises to confirm whether there is a fire or not ?  Do you also realize they respond to motor vehicle accidents ?  There is a percentage of officers which are stationed at the aerodrome to respond to aircraft emergencies.  No-one can predict when they will have to respond to any number of incidents.  How about get rid of half the firefighters and when your house is burning you are told to wait until the officers are finished dealing with an accident.  How does that plan sound to you ???????

  4. Anonymous says:

    why in the world are we,  the people allowing this dump to poison us

    WHY oh why can't they just give the dump to Dart ( as agreed ) and let him take care of it

    Midland is the perfect place for the new waste management facility

    Government…. STOP killing us and the tourist with the stench and smoke


    No civilized country in world would allow anything like this dump to exist 

    This 2014   have we lost our minds ??????????????????

    • Anonymous says:

      Don't worry; Ossie has a plan. He wouldn't lie about a thing like that.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Time for a renaming exercise from the 'Cayman Islands Fire Service' to the 'Cayman Dump Fire Service'.

  6. anonymous says:


    Was quite an interesting headline the other day, " 25 years of broken promises" !  The article was of every government minister that was responsible for the dump, how they promised to resolve it, and the actual resolution.  Was quite interesting to see some of the older politicians that was spearheading the project at that time and what they did resolve.  After 6 elections and 6 members responsible for that portfolio, absolutely nothing was done!!!  We are worse off now than we were then!!  But, don't that say something for our representatives in Government, they are collecting a ridiculous salary for doing nothing!!  Do they not have the foresight to correct these problems on their own thinking and ability?  Why do they always have to say that they need a feasibility report?  I thought we elected these individuals because of their leadership, there ability to decide what is better for the country!!  I tell you what, It was quite hilarious to read all of the comments, commitments, and broken promises that each one made.  Cayman, let us face reality, who else did we elect to lead us?  It has been back and forth, from UDP to PPM, so how can it get any better?  It is like saying, well who can I trust more; an alcoholic or a crack head?  My point is here, it will not get any better!!  The government on these Islands will not fix anything until it bites them in the _ _ _, and they know they will lose votes, then they will try and rectify the problem!!!  Don't worry folks, I am assuming there is quite a build up of toxic and explosive gases under that dump, one day when George Town explodes and half of the Towners are wiped out from the blast or the toxic gases, then they will have it resolved!!!  Until then enjoy the smell and the smoke.


  7. Anonymous says:

    Ozzie, can't hear a thing from you? Everything ok? Smoke getting in your eyes?

  8. pmilburn says:

    I am amazed that our Govt has not had the guts to just tell someone to come in here and take out all those tires for free before now.If memory serves me correctly we pay a fee for each tire on our cars when we either buy that car or when we license same so in other words Govt has been paid for these tires from way back when and it is a SHAM not SHAME so get on with it.Goodness knows how many milions of Mosies have been breeding there

    • Anonymous says:

      I agree with you 100 %.  The tires are a huge health hazard yet they are waiting for someone to offer just a little bit more.  Whoever is willing to take them off the hands of CI Government should be allowed to do so free of cost.  Get rid of them.  Not only mosquitoes but rats and airborne toxins spewing out from the dump.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Move. It. To. Bodden Town.

  10. Coconutz says:

    Reporter: In light of the recent fires, do you think that it may be in the public interest to resolve the dump issue once and for all?

    Minister of/for the Dump: Ah yes, we are examining every option to determine the most feasible solution for the refuse.

    Reporter:  And when do you expect to get this matter resolved?

    Dump Minister: Ah yes, we are investigating possibilities of flying in possible investigators to determine which examination is able to determine the most feasible solution for the trash.

    Reporter:  That sounds like a rather lengthy time-line…

    Minister who just took a Dump: Ah yes, we are not concerned with time lines as long as the examinations of possibilities determine that the investigators investigating the various examinations and possibilities determine a course that is the most feasible solution for the mountain of crap that we have built.

    Reporter: In other words you have no idea what you're talking about, nor are you able to provide me with any guidelines as to time and manner in which this matter will be resolved.

    Minister with Dump on his face:  Ah yes, once we have completed the investigative reports that the investigative reporters have compiled during the investigative period  allocated for the preliminary stages of this investigative investigation, I assume that we will be able to provide some preliminary and unfounded answers which will shed some speculative light on the most feasible solution for the colossal mountain of sh1t that we have allowed for decades to grow unchecked.

    Reporter: To sum up, and please correct me if I am in any way wrong, but what you're really trying to say is that you have no idea, no hope and no solutions.

    Minister who just got dumped on:  Ah yes, we are all F@#$ed!!!

  11. Anonymous says:

    I don't understand how we, as a country, can continue to be satisfied with the slackness of DEH.

    From the UK white paper on OTs: "The facility [dump] on Little Cayman was lined, but the lining had been fractured by the unregulated burning of rubbish. The facility [dump] on Cayman Brac was unlined and waste appeared to be seeping into a nearby lake. "

    Meanwhile the Grand Cayman dump is on fire every couple weeks!

    They are endangering our people's health with their inability to deal with the waste control issue. How much longer are we going to allow them to continue receiving salaries for this kind of service?

    • Anonymous says:

      it starts in the home. it's all OUR trash.

      • Anonymous says:

        I agree and I recycle to the extent that the facilities at Camana Bay allow. DEH just puts all the recyclables in a separate hole in the ground. The people can only do as much as our government facilitiates, but our government should be held accountable by the people. Instead, we allow them to continue to be slack and get paid to do so.

        • Anonymous says:

          The recycle centre on dump road accepts furniture, scrap metal, lumber, auto parts, computers

          Please visit next time you have something you no longer need or want

          We will find a new home or use for it and keep it out of the landfill

  12. Anonymous says:

    Inactivity by fire crew is a good thing.  Do you want them busy putting out fires 24/7?.

  13. Anonymous says:

    It is so disgusting to see the Fire Vehicles out on personal errands, such as picking up food from Restaurants. What if there is an accident while out on personal errands, who will then be responsible to fix or replace the vehicle?

    • Anonymous says:

      Do you realize many times when you see them on "personal" errands such as picking up lunch they are on duty and drive the vehicles in case there is a call which they would immediately respond to leaving their lunch behind.  Do you also realize at times they are doing a 24-48 hour shift such as when there is a fire at the dump and they barely get a chance to drink water much less have lunch.  Please get your facts straight before pointing fingers.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Dart to make an offer soon.

  15. Anonymous says:

    wow these guys are getting good at these fires they even know the square footage  now ! must be all the practice paying off.

  16. Anonymous says:

    At least they have something to do other than polish their machines, cook and play dominoes.Please fly in some of the Brac firemen so they can actually hold a hose and do some real work. Ernst and Young consultants need to do something about this inactivity and overstaffing but of course they won't. Too difficult politically.

    • Anonymous says:

      And it seems that personal protective masks and suites are still not used by the firefighters.

      • Anonymous says:

        They don't have time to be lounging around in hotels !


      • Anonymous says:

        If Government is not going to fix the dump then we should all be issued our own personal gas masks.

      • Anonymous says:

        Guesss they couldnt afford and dont have any as their uniforms must cost a pennybeing made by one of te Firemens Company if that rumour is true


    • Anonymous says:

      LOL.  Inactivity ???????  Do you want them to start fires so they have something to put out ?  

      • Anonymous says:

        No 9:13, I want to see their numbers greatly reduced so we don't have to pay for so many of them being inactive.

        • Anonymous says:

          We are paying them for their skills and training, and for risking their lives in an emergency to save ours.