Barbadians can expect to see an additional ten new garbage trucks on the road from Monday.
The trucks, each costing BDS$400 000, were handed over to the Sanitation Service Authority (SSA) at the Bridgetown Port today, where SSA Chairman Rudy Grant told members of the media that measures have been put in place to ensure that relevant documentation to ensure the vehicles are road-ready are being processed.
Grant said that by early 2020 there should be a total of 29 new trucks on the island.
“We now have 19 new trucks. We heard the plea of the Barbadian people and we recognised that this is a matter that we had to give very serious and urgent attention to so we are very happy today that we have these ten trucks here. There are two trucks which would have been delivered yesterday.
“Those trucks are from an order of 12 additional trucks, so there are still another further ten trucks that are coming. So our expectation is that very early in the new year, we will be up then to 29 new trucks and we will have in excess of 40 garbage trucks on the road,” he told members of the media.
The Chairman, who noted that the SSA had embarked on a number of programmes to facilitate better collection of garbage across the island, also indicated that the public was responsible for assisting with the effort.
Meanwhile, Minister of Environment and National Beautification Trevor Prescod, who was also present to view the new garbage trucks, which have been financed by the Ministry of Finance, described them as an early Christmas gift for the people of Barbados.
On that note, Prescod said he expected to see a substantial reduction in waste across Barbados and noted that SSA had put all measures in place to properly utilise the trucks.
He recalled that when the Barbados Labour Party (BLP) came to office in May 2018, the cash-strapped state-owned agency only had about 12 malfunctioning trucks in operation.
“I am now up to 19 new trucks along with making sure that we repair the ones that we have there and keep doing the required maintenance to resolve these issues, I can give you the assurance that you are going to see a major transformation. I just want to say that the Barbadian public has been extremely patient,” Prescod said.
The Minister also noted that the trucks have come at a time when Government has launched its national cleanup effort. (AH)