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Gov’t. Wants Quarry Blast Probe Resolved

Image: An aerial view of the quarry site [PHOTO: Kendell Eugene]

GOVERNMENT will apply pressure to bring to a conclusion the pending matter of the Ferrand Quarry explosion on the Bexon Highway that killed four people and wounded 31 on March 21 this year.

Prime Minister Allen Chastanet gave the assurance that government will bring its power to bear for a speedy resolution of the matter.

“I’m personally very disappointed in how long it is taking for this matter to be resolved because this is obviously something that’s very painful to the family members that were involved,” Chastanet said.

The effects of the blast at the quarry were felt throughout the nearby community of Odsan and surrounding places.

People further afield felt the tremors, at first linking it to an earthquake. So huge was the blast that it formed an enormous crater on the site and caused severe damage to several nearby vehicles. Nearby homes and buildings were reportedly damaged as well and their owners, some of whom have had gotten their insurers involved, are also waiting for conclusion on the matter.

A report was compiled by local and foreign investigators and is now in the possession of the Director of Public Prosecution, Daarsrean Greene.

Home Affairs and National Security Minister, Hermangild Francis, almost two weeks ago, said that Greene was in conversation with the lead investigator after which a decision would be made.

Chastanet believes the matter is simply taking too long. He said he has had discussions with Greene in the hope that the matter could be expedited as quickly as possible. Government, he said, was not procrastinating on this particular matter.

“We have been allowing the process to take place. We are now going to apply some pressure to see if we could bring these things to a conclusion much quicker,” Chastanet said.

The Prime Minister spoke on the matter of the outstanding bills for individuals who were sent to Martinique because of the intensity of their wounds.

“The Government of St. Lucia took front on this issue and undertook to take the cost of it. But those things have to be resolved and clearly until there is actually an investigation and a concluding report, the insurance companies are not going to pay and again who is then accountable?” Chastanet said.

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