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Input sought for Ferry Reach evacuation plan

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Planning for the unthinkable: residents of Ferry Reach on St George’s Island have been invited to attend a public meeting on Thursday to discuss the creation of an evacuation plan for an emergency with the nearby oil storage tanks and docks (File photograph)

The Emergency Measures Organisation has invited Ferry Reach residents to discuss an emergency evacuation plan in case of a disaster.

Representatives from both Rubis Energy Bermuda and Sol Petroleum Bermuda are involved in the meeting, which will take place on Thursday, January 24.

Steve Cosham, disaster risk reduction and mitigation team leader with the Ministry of National Security, said: “Thus far, there has been no incident serious enough to require a neighbourhood evacuation, but as public safety is one of our team’s primary objectives, we need to develop a contingency plan.

“We are asking members of the neighbourhood to be involved, as a collaborative approach will help ensure all inputs are considered to help ensure neighbourhood protection and safety.”

Graham Redford, managing director of Rubis, and Jonathan Brewin, general manager of SOL, said in a shared statement: “We want to reiterate that there is no reason for alarm.

“This meeting is designed to garner input from our neighbours that along with guidance from the key industry and emergency service providers, will allow the team to develop the necessary contingency planning so that the best possible evacuation plans can be implemented quickly and efficiently should an emergency arise.”

Other parties to be involved in the meeting are the Bermuda Police Service, the Bermuda Fire and Rescue Service, the Department of Health, the Department of Corrections, Skyport Corporation, the Bermuda Civil Aviation Authority, the Bermuda Airport Authority, the Rescue Co-ordination Centre, the Department of Environmental and Natural Resources, the Corporation of St George and are MPs.

Wayne Furbert, acting Minister of National Security, said: “Not only is it best practice, it is also vital we get the professional opinions of the emergency and energy professionals, along with the input from Ferry Reach neighbourhood residents.

“We need everyone involved to ensure we create the best and most effective plans.”

The meeting will be held at the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Science’s Hanson Hall, and will start at 6.30pm.

Big provider: Storage tanks at Rubis Energy Bermuda’s depot in Ferry Reach, St George’s. (File photograph)