Trucker pitches in to collect trash
A big-hearted trucker has donated his services free to help pick up trash after government garbage collectors took industrial action earlier this week.
Paul Wilmot said he had already decided to pitch in without payment before the public works ministry contacted him to join an effort by private contractors and the two corporations to fill the gap left after unionised waste management workers downed tools at the start of the week.
Mr Wilmot, the owner of Wilmot Trucking & Excavating, said that he was “told to put in a bill. But I told him no, I'm not going to do that”.
He also took on a bigger workload than Lieutenant-Colonel David Burch, the public works minister, had asked.
Mr Wilmot said the minister “basically asked if I could clean up a certain area and I said if I do that, then I'm going to do the whole thing”.
He explained: “I'm not going to do anything piecemeal.”
Mr Wilmot said he was being helped by his brother, Charles, and friend, Jevone Sealey.
The trio have collected household trash from several locations in Warwick and Southampton and made up to seven trips a day to the Tynes Bay Incinerator.
Mr Wilmot said: “My brother, Jevone, and I just decided we were going to clean up our community and we are not charging Government or anybody. We are just giving back.
“At the moment, I am taking all of the raw household trash away from people's properties so we don't have rat infestation.
“That's what we are concentrating on so that we can keep the island healthy and clean.
“My brother and I are using the one truck that we have and we're just hustling along, loading up by hand and taking it to Tynes Bay and coming back and finishing off the area.”
Mr Wilmot explained: “I am just trying to make Bermuda beautiful, like it used to be when I was coming up, and also trying to encourage people to put their differences aside in these difficult times and just come together.”
He said that philanthropy was instilled in his family by his parents.
Mr Wilmot added: “That's how my parents, John and Brenda Wilmot, brought up my brother Charles, sister Carla and myself.
“They brought us up to give and that it's not always what you get, but what you give.
“I have been a giver, helping around the Warwick community, or any community for that matter, for as long as I have been in business. I just don't highlight a lot of the things that I do.”
He said: “Even when we have hurricanes we guys just go out and do what we have to do, so this is nothing that just started since the Covid-19 outbreak.”
However, Mr Wilmot's stealth work to help the public has not gone unnoticed.
Sabrina Kirby, a mother-of-two from Southampton, said: “Mr Wilmot's generosity has really touched me.
“Even in the economic climate that we are in when everybody is trying to make a payroll, trying to pay taxes or whatever, he's been cleaning up his neighbourhood free of charge — and he didn't have to do that.
“There are a lot of good deeds that Paul does in the community that goes unrecognised. He really does good community work.”
Normal service by works and engineering staff is expected to resume next Monday.
Bermuda Industrial Union trash collectors downed tools over what the ministry said were “concerns raised by workers”.
It is understood staff were worried after a colleague who had been overseas before self-quarantine rules were imposed to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic went back to work.