October 25, 2020

Cayman: New equipment helps CIFS on the road


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GRAND CAYMAN (GIS) – New equipment has arrived at the Cayman Islands Fire Service () designed to tackle road traffic collisions.

            Four complete sets of Holmatro road rescue hydraulic cutting and spreading tools, with associated modern road traffic collision extrication equipment, were added to the inventory of the CIFS this month. The equipment is now located in Frank Sound, West Bay, Central and Cayman Brac stations.

            Vehicle extrication is the process of removing a vehicle from around an individual involved in a road traffic collision when conventional means of exiting the vehicle are impossible or unsafe. A delicate approach to remove vehicle roofs, doors and structural posts is vital to minimise the potential for injury.

            “The investment by the Government to provide new equipment for the Fire Service demonstrates our focus on public safety and our commitment to reducing the number of fatalities and serious injuries on our roads,” commented the Minister for Home Affairs, Hon. Tara Rivers, JP.

            “This most recent acquisition is part of our overall plan this budget cycle to equip the Fire Service to world-class standards to better protect our community,” she continued.

            “Given the prevalence of road traffic collisions, increased traffic levels and the technical complexity of modern vehicles, this investment provides frontline crews with state-of-the-art tools. This new equipment ensures a quick and controlled extrication to maximise survivability rates of people involved,” Interim Chief Fire Officer, Paul Walker QFSM explained.

            A bespoke training programme has been delivered at all stations. This covered equipment familiarisation, cutting and spreading techniques and operational road traffic collision procedures to maintain scene safety and safe systems of work for officers.

             “Road traffic collisions are unfortunately part of every fire officer’s career and we can all recount stories of the tragic loss of life and serious injuries. At CIFS, we do everything we can to minimise the impact that road traffic collisions can have on an individual’s life,” Deputy Chief Fire Officer for Domestic, Roy Charlton said.

            “Most tragic though is the fact that a lot of road traffic collisions are avoidable if all road users adopted some key safety principles. We all have an important role to play in keeping everyone safe on the streets,” he continued.

             The CIFS’s CITRUS (Cayman Islands Think Road User Safety) approach includes simple tips all road users must remember to stay safe while using our roads.

·         Pedestrians – make sure you can be seen at night

·         Cyclists – wear a helmet and obey normal road rules

·         Motorcyclists – stick to the speed limit. Wear a helmet and protective clothing

·         Drivers – avoid the fatal four:

o   Speeding

o   Driving under the influence

o   Distraction driving (mobile phone use)

o   Not wearing a seat belt

The Road Safety Week Conference begins on Tuesday, 28 October 2019. Hosted by the National Roads Authority, the four-day conference includes local and international speakers discussing best practices in road safety.

CIFS will be attending to discuss its continued commitment to promoting safety on local roads.

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