Fort James RO delayed by broken-down boat, Cabinet claims; but Lovell says eight-year problem cannot be fixed in eight days

The July month-end deadline for completion of the Fort James Reverse Osmosis (RO) plant appears to be threatened, since the vessel bringing the plant from Dubai is reportedly delayed.

According to the Cabinet, during its meeting on Wednesday, June 15, it learned that the vessel transporting the plant remains broken down – reportedly after it lost power off Martinique, nearly a week ago.

But Harold Lovell, Political Leader of the United Progressive Party (UPP), says he is not at all surprised by this most recent excuse proffered by the Administration.

For the past eight years, Lovell says, the people have been hit with excuse after excuse. Now, he says, the Browne Administration is trying to fix the water problem in eight months when it had eight years in which to do so.

Meanwhile, the Cabinet reports that construction of the building to house the plant continues, and the pipes to bring seawater to the plant have been buried.

APUA says the Fort James Plant will be producing 500,000 gallons in its first phase and will service areas that include St. John’s City, The Point, Villa, Fort Road, Yorks, and McKinnons.

In the meantime, it was reported that the Ffryes RO plant is now producing 900,000 gallons per day, up from its previous 775,000 gallons, and Crabbes is up by 1.5 million gallons and now producing three million gallons daily.

Barnacle Point reportedly will have new membranes and filters delivered in a week, while upgrades to the Camp Blizzard plant will see it producing 300,000 gallons per day, APUA says.

The utility company adds that Pigeon Point is now delivering 300,000 gallons of water daily, and the Bethesda Plant has an $18 million budget for its installment, with pipes and significant storage capacity.

However, there has been no update on the commissioning of the unused storage tanks that were installed by the UPP Administration.