PLP & Ministry On Emergency Broadcast System

August 9, 2016

“News that the Emergency Broadcast System has been out of operation for several months should concern every Bermudian,” MP Walter Roban said, adding that “for this critical tool to have been down for months in the midst of hurricane season is a clear sign that something is seriously wrong.”

In response, the Ministry of National Security confirmed that “due to a lightning strike at the end of May 2016, the Emergency Broadcast Facility received some damage,” and said “it is anticipated that the installation of all the specialized technical equipment will be completed before the end of August.”

Walter Roban’s Statement

Shadow Minister of Home Affairs Walter Roban said, “News that the Emergency Broadcast System has been out of operation for several months should concern every Bermudian.

“The EBS is an essential tool to keep our people informed during emergency situations, such as hurricanes. For this critical tool to have been down for months, in the midst of hurricane season is a clear sign that something is seriously wrong.

“This is not the first incident concerning the Emergency Broadcast System. In fact, the Emergency Measures Organisation [EMO] was forced to use a private broadcaster to communicate with residents during a recent hurricane as the system was inoperative.

“Finger pointing and playing the blame game won’t fix the Emergency Broadcast System. Only leadership and action can ensure that this inoperative system is fixed and in the interim, measures put in place to cover the potential needs of our people.

“The PLP proposes:

  • “1] A backup plan that allows other antenna systems to be used for National Emergency purposes if the principal government antenna is out of service ‎;
  • “2] Further development of the cellular text messaging service to provide hurricane education ‎and emergency information;
  • “3] Cooperation with fiber cable and wireless broadcasters so that they are incorporated into the system of providing hurricane education, warned and monitoring information‎;
  • “4] Regular updates on the progress of repairing the Emergency Broadcast System or the status of the alternative measures in place.

“The safety and security of the people who call our island home is our chief concern. We urge the Government to ensure that if an emergency arises, we are prepared and ready to use the EBS or alternative measures.”

Ministry’s Statement

In response, a Ministry spokesperson said, “The Ministry of National Security can confirm that due to a lightning strike at the end of May 2016, the Emergency Broadcast Facility received some damage.

“The Ministry sought a vendor to test the facility and identify the problem and it was found that the antennae needed replacing.

“As an added note, the old antennae has specially made mounting brackets which also needed replacing. A new antennae together with the new mounts, have been sourced from overseas and are expected to be on island shortly.

“Additionally, the Ministry undertook to source a new transmitter to aid in increasing the power output of the station’s signal to allow more homes to receive the signal. It is anticipated that the installation of all the specialized technical equipment will be completed before the end of August.”

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Comments (27)

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  1. Lady Bug says:

    PLP always pointing fingers, as if they were never in power to have these things sorted themselves…

    Why not help, not hinder. You want to show us you’re worthy of being voted in – then act like it!!!!

    • ONe Term says:

      We can assume you didn’t read their proposal. You’re vote doesn’t count anyway since you voted life time UBPOBaer.
      The only votes that matter are swing voters and both PLP and OBA know who are the swing voters.

      20% Black Bermudians and further more as a swing voter the OBA hasn’t done anything but piss me off since I voted for them in 2012. They best pull a big rabbit out of the hat if they want me to vote for them again. Tired of both sides playing us voters for fools. You get 1 term after that I swing or flipflop to the other side. I will repeat that every election until either party gets it RIGHT.

      • Build a Better Bermuda says:

        And so far in their one term they have halted the rampant recession we were in; more than halved the debt burden that threatened the financial viability of government; set into action a turn around of our tourism sector; almost end sended the out of control rising unemployment… and you are unhappy and now threatening to go back to voting for the PLP that have promised to go back to doing what they were doing before the last election. If you think it takes such a short time to fix the damage that was done to this island, locally and internationally, then you don’t really understand how economies work

        • Build a Better Bermuda says:

          Should have been ‘deficit burden” not ‘debt burden’

    • ..oba/U.B.P. is worse. They did not even pattern their work as the government similar to the U.B.P.
      They are soooo focused on money!!!money!!!money!!! They have missed the boat.
      Insensitive, mean, indecisive, cruel, foolish group of individuals. If one chats with former U.B.P. members, they do not like most of what this group does.

      • Build a Better Bermuda says:

        They aren’t focused on money, they just understand that government needs it to function. The previous policy of running this country by debt was unsustainable and is one of the main reasons why there are so many issues with maintenance. The money ran out and the next step would have been to sell this country completely out to some foreign creditor like the IMF to bail us out. And all the PLP can do is complain that things aren’t getting done and the OBA hasn’t fixed the financial mess they made, and then in the next breathe promising to spend like there is no debt and complain the OBA aren’t spending more money to fix the massive maintenance issues that were created when the government couldn’t afford to maintain everything because the PLP didn’t plan for the viability of maintanence in their financial management.

    • Onion Juice says:

      This Government is a JOKE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. smh says:

    Walter Woban is such a joke and can’t be taken seriously. Yawn yawn and more yawn

    • TO smh:
      Fehey is the true joke…yawn, yawn, yawn.
      Bring on that next election.

      • Onion Juice says:

        Bring on de next election?
        You fools would get hoodwinked from another token again and vote them in.

    • drunken ursula says:

      He maybe a joke but, have you checked Kenny Bascome, Cole Simons and Nanni Outerbrige I laugh my a$$ off every time they speak…clueless

  3. Mary says:

    what about the causeway bridge? that the unprogressive labour (non equality)party never fixed smmh

    • TO Mary:
      Your comment ties in quite nicely with the Only Backward ASSociation(oba)!!! L.O.L.

      • Mary says:

        Truth is they blew our money on one big Party what party the unprogressive PLP can’t be denied we were taken back to major debt , with no funds to pay for anything , tee hee BIG joke NOT.

    • drunken ursula says:

      My dearest Mary, what about all those promises made by the OBA before we all drank their cool aide?

      • Mary says:

        You mean like the illusion promise that the unprogressive party can fix everything going forward smmh they are just scrambling for pay checks and trying to get back on the gravy train .

  4. joly says:

    You had one job. It’s kind of funny that the emergency broadcast system is less robust than the commercial broadcast networks.

  5. Say Whaat? says:

    Are people really trying to point the finger at the PLP for this mess? Why is this not a priority? It’s hurricane season people and the emergency broadcast system DOESN’T work!!! The OBA need to fix this now. We can’t wait until a hurricane comes this way and then try to fix it. SMH. But obviously the safety of the people is not a huge concern to the OBA, or they would have found the money to fix it. Disgusting!

    • Rhonnda Oliver says:

      Who said it wasn’t a priority?

    • Zevon says:

      And when it’s fixed Roban will try to take credit. “They wouldn’t have thpught of fixing it if I hadn’t brought it up”.

    • Hmmm says:

      Another PLP person proves reading the whole article is beyond their ability.

    • OBA Magic! says:

      The OBA are good, but they are not magical… What do you want them to do, snap their fingers and make a new antenna to appear and be installed?
      There is an antenna on order and a new transmitter and they will be installed by the end of August.

  6. Rhonnda Oliver says:

    Dear Mr Roban,

    While I don’t disagree with your suggestions, I hazard a guess that you were well aware that the issue was being taken care of.

    Instead of saying ‘this problem exists, and while it is being taken care of, the government should have told the public’ you say ‘this problem exists, it’s very concerning and if we were in office we’d do this’. The undertext being ‘They are doing nothing. We would take care of it immediately.’

    I understand that all politicians will manipulate words to reach their target audiences, but it continues to be disturbing that both sides are doing this so extensively.

    I suspect I speak for the frustrated majority in suggesting that both the Opposition and the Government need to stop being manipulative with the public. Good and bad, both sides be forthcoming about successes and failures. Stop being so adversarial. Try doing joint statements on issues like this.

    Like it or not, we’re all in this together.
    Both parties need to accept this, and act like they believe it. Because unless they do, very little is going to change for anybody

    A Bermudian.

  7. Zevon says:

    Of course the PLP would have fixed this in hours. Of course.
    Fixing the economy though — that can wait until 2025.

  8. Derek A. G. Jones says:

    What’s the problem? It’s being fixed and we have a back up system already in place. Thanks for the additional back up suggestions.

  9. aceboy says:

    My bet is that it is being fixed as we speak and that Roban is going to take credit for it.

    That seems to be the PLP modus operandi these days.

    The OBA has had to make ALOT of unpopular decisions. They piss me off on occasion too. But, the alternative???……my goodness. Giving back power to the people who created the mess we are in is suicide.

  10. Gods Truth says:

    Don’t matter who’s in power when a hurricane comes; destruction has no mercy, something of such importance should be fixed and maintained at all times. Speaking from a technical stand point,I’m sure it can be addressed asap. To know it’s been put aside from the to-do list is scary for us fellow islanders… smh these elites only care for their own. # vote next generation Bda takeover