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Government of Montserrat assessing contingency preparedness after Monday’s bomb scare

BRADES – The Royal Montserrat Police Force (RMPF) and the Human Resources Department of the Government of Montserrat are taking the lead on assessing the government’s evacuation and contingency procedures for emergencies. This decision was taken on Tuesday following a bomb scare, which lead to the evacuation of the government headquarters in Brades on Monday morning.

Government officials were notified on Monday at 9:15 am by the police department that they had received a call stating that a bomb was on the main compound of the Government of Montserrat in Brades. However, a subsequent four-hour search of all offices by members of the police force did not turn up any explosive devices. Meanwhile, all of the offices had been evacuated and staff sent home. By Tuesday morning, all offices were open for business as normal.

Deputy Commissioner of Police Paul Morris told officials during the evaluation meeting that there was a need for everyone to be aware of the plans which would come into effect during a major emergency such as a bomb threat. Commissioner of Police Steve Foster said the police department had already assessed and dealt with the deficiencies in the operational procedures executed during the emergency.

There are two members of the RMPF who are trained in bomb search techniques.

A committee is being established comprising of representatives from the RMPF, the fire department, the Human Resources Department, Office of the Chief Minister and the Disaster Management Coordination Agency (DMCA) to look at the government’s plans for evacuating and securing the headquarters in the event of an emergency.