Montego Bay Fire Service to Receive Support from Atlanta Counterpart

first_imgThe Montego Bay Fire Department is set to receive well-needed support from the Atlanta Fire Rescue Department in the United States of America, in an agreement brokered between both cities, as part of its twinning relationship.The commitment to offer specialized training to Montego Bay firefighters was made by Atlanta’s Fire Chief, Kelvin Cochran Harris on Monday, May 20, during a high-level meeting with a delegation from Montego Bay being led by Mayor Glendon Harris.Chief Cochran outlined that in strengthening the 30-year sister cities relationship between Atlanta and Montego Bay, he and his team are prepared to offer training and certification in special operational functions and hazardous materials management at all levels of the service.The Atlanta Fire Chief also committed to offering further training to leadership and management level staff in various areas of fire and rescue, in addition to establishing an exchange programme where firefighters could travel to either city for technical experience.The Atlanta Fire and Rescue Training programme is rated as one of the best in the United States where it is accessed by other municipalities, including some with which they are twinned.Mayor Harris said that fire safety in Montego Bay is one of his primary areas of concern, hence the focus of the discussions, which led to the agreement. “I expect that the training programme will be of tremendous benefit to the firefighters in particular and the people of the city in general,” he stated.The Mayor pointed out that plans for a new fire station in Montego Bay are far advanced, and the support through training of the human resource will better position the service to offer improved intervention.Mayor Harris said he will be meeting with the hierarchy of the Montego Bay Fire Department to work on the logistics of the overall programme, encompassing training and personnel exchange.The Mayor is on four-day official visit to Atlanta at the invitation of his counterpart, Mayor Kasim Reed.He leads a delegation which includes Secretary/Manager of the St. James Parish Council, Gerald Lee; Chairman of the Civic and Community Affairs Committee, Councillor Suzette Brown; and Chairman of the Atlanta/Montego Bay Sister Cities Committee, Fred Smith.The delegation, which arrived in Atlanta on Saturday, May 18, attended a welcome reception hosted by Jamaica’s Honorary Consul in Atlanta and Chairman of the Atlanta/Montego Bay Sister Cities Committee, Vin Martin and his wife Hazel; attended a Joint Sister Cities Meeting; and also met with representatives of the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau.On Tuesday, May 21, Mayor Harris and the delegation will meet with Mayor Reed for discussions on a wide range of topics relating to both cities.Meetings are also scheduled with members of the Atlanta City Council, representatives of the Atlanta Solid Waste Department and the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce.Mayor Harris and his delegation return to Montego Bay on Wednesday, May 22.Contact: Derrick A. Scottlast_img