The Gros Islet Fire Station was forced to cease operations on Saturday night due to a manpower shortage, reliable sources have confirmed.
According to information obtained by the Times, there were insufficient persons to man the night shift.
According to sources, emergency calls to the Gros Islet station were therefore diverted to the Castries headquarters for response.
“No guarantees can be given that the situation will not occur again,” an official familiar with the situation told the Times.
It was reported that currently, the Saint Lucia Fire Service (SLFS) has a numerical strength of below 260 with the number fluctuating due to factors such as illnesses and vacation leave.
Sources indicate that to function effectively, the Fire Service needs about 320 members of staff.
They say more will be required with a new fire station at Babonneau coming on stream.
However, some relief is in sight.
Forty trainees began training in Vieux Fort last month to become full-fledged members of the SLFS.
The training programme will last for three months.