There will always be tragedies and they will always occur especially as man has no control over Mother Nature.
In 1994 the usual excursion to one of the islands up north took place. The MV Providence Mc and Island Queen set out from Grenada to St. Vincent. The Providence Mc arrived at their destination and expected that the Island Queen would have docked earlier, but that did not happen.
Suffice it to say that the Island Queen with all fifty-four souls vanished into thin air and to date there is no record of what happened.
Accidents will take place despite all the stringent regulations that may exist. Human beings by nature are adventurous and here lies the problem, if I may call it that.
However, there are always basic and fundamental things/principles, which ought to be in place to alleviate as far as possible a situation.
Listening to the program – Beyond the Headline – on Monday, February 15, quite a lot of points were raised which should enlighten all of what is entailed for safety at sea for all who venture or wish to venture out to sea.
The question arises – with all the most stringent regulations governing any matter, what causes something to happen which the regulations governs?
Simple, lack of common sense; lack of education in the main; not being pro-active; disregard for proficiency in any operation among other things (formal education), so that by nature man basically knows of danger.
The pig falls into the sea with no land in site, yet it swims to the land (instinct). To enhance our common sense or lack thereof, we educate or try to educate a people with a view that they should not take risks.
Hence we should be pro-active, knowing of the likelihood that anything can happen, all necessary steps should be taken to avoid the possibility of any mishap (the recent mishap).
Persons specifically trained or having gained a very high standard of proficiency by way of love for, years of experience or formal training in a vocation should not be immoderately removed from an entity thus endangering the efficiency of the operation.
Excellent idea to have a department of Marine Affairs, but can we afford the upkeep of such? Don’t get me wrong. Common sense dictates that the knowledge of the risks that some Grenadians take whenever there is an activity/attraction, basic precautionary measures must/should be taken/put in place for the Sailing Festival, The Bill Fishing Tournament, Carriacou Regatta or the occasion like Carriacou Carnival.
Leaving out all the International Regulations governing Seafarers, common sense dictates that the Protective Services should have been in full operation during the festive season. Let us not fool ourselves about it. Trinidadians, Barbadians, Vincentians, foreigners as well as locals flock/take the opportunity to go to Carriacou at such a time not only because of the festivity, but also for at least one other reason.
So that just as the Protective Services is not only put on alert but also in many cases leave of officers is cancelled so that there will be adequate number of persons available to manage any situation whenever there is a Grenada Carnival, an Intercollegiate Sport meet, the opening of the Athletic Stadium and so forth.
So too, this should have been the case for the Carriacou Carnival.
Sad to say that nothing of the kind had been done and as a result the unfortunate lost of lives.
My condolence goes to the families who lost their love ones.