2000 residents sign petition

Smoke from the Vunato landfill over Lautoka City. Picture: FELIX CHAUDHARY

THE Lautoka Residents and Ratepayers Association says more than 2000 residents have signed a petition calling for the immediate adoption of measures that will control or mitigate fires at the Vunato Dump site.

Association president Narayan Reddy said the residents called for solutions to end such fires.

“For one, we want the whole dump area barricaded and fire hydrants installed around the dump area,” he said.

“We also want a small tower built where security will have a bird’s eye view of the whole dump. “We are also calling for some of the boys who work at dump site to be trained as firefighters.”

He said they were looking to the future and were not blaming the city council or any other stakeholder.

“We are asking the minister responsible to take things up and do this. A lot of money has been collected through the plastic levy and funds for COP 23 that can be used for this so it is a small request from ratepayers.

“We are still collecting signatures (for the petition) and so far, more than 2000 people have signed.

“We are aiming for 3000 by Wednesday and one (copy of petition) will be given to the Minister for Waterways and Environment and another will be provided to the CEO of Lautoka City Council.”

Mr Reddy said while the Ministry of Environment had provided water pumps and trucks, the long-term effects of such fires needed to be looked at.

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