Wednesday 21 October, 2020

St Lucian fishermen receive VHF radios to increase safety

Concerned about the frequency of fishermen being lost at sea, a donation of 200 very high frequency (VHF) radios were made to a group of Saint Lucian fishermen which will assist in plying their trade more effectively.

"The safety of our fishermen whilst they are out at sea has been a major source of concern for our Government," Prime Minister Allen Chastanet said.

"On too many occasions have we received reports of missing fishermen due to their inability to communicate when they find themselves in a distressed situation.

Yesterday, we began to address this serious issue by contributing 200 Very High Frequency (VHF) Radios to Local fisherfolk."

The donation was made possible through collaboration with the Departments of Fisheries and Telecommunications, the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) through the Climate Change Adaptation in the Eastern Caribbean Project (CC4Fish Project).

"These VHF radios will enable fisherfolk to communicate with each other over substantial distances via marine radio channels and also serves as an invaluable safety tool that alerts the marine police during moments of distress," the Prime Minister said.

Thursday's donation was well received by the fishermen.

"This is much appreciated because a radio is one of the most important tools used while at sea.

We can contact our families and emergency people because sometimes the cell phones not working because of how far out we are at sea," one recipient said.

Saint Lucian fishermen have been urged to observe best practices while out at sea, including having the necessary equipment.

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