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Cayman Regiment to the rescue, clearing up after Grace

Local News 24 Aug, 2021 Follow News

(L-R) Trooper Barnes, Trooper Watler Trooper Oyog, Trooper Moore Colonel Spiers and Trooper Kelly

Tying a tree to the back end of a front loader

Moving a tree at the Botanic Park

Bravo Troop Two hard at work clearing fallen trees

Busy at Beach Bay Road

By Christopher Tobutt


Tropical Storm Grace was a great opportunity for the Cayman Islands Regiment to show exactly how they can come to the rescue in a national disaster. The regiment came out in force to help wherever it was needed, all over the Islands. In the Eastern Districts Troop Bravo stepped in to help at the Clifton Hunter School, clearing away trees and further up Frank Sound Road, around a dozen members of Bravo Two were busy with some heavy equipment, just right for hauling trees out of the way at the Queen Elizabeth II Botanic Park where the storm had caused extensive damage.

The Regiment’s Colonel Simon Spiers said, “We’ve got Bravo Squadron who are all reservists recruited from the Eastern Districts out in the Eastern districts today helping with the cleanup – around 30 with these troops. We also have a troop over at Beach Bay they have just finished clearing from the beach up to the main highway and we have a team out in the East End assisting Children and Family Services to give access to people’s houses again.

“We will be going to Gun Bay later this afternoon. We’ve got a number of chainsaws and we’ve got the front loader to help clear away the trees that can’t be saved, and wherever possible saving trees that the guys here can replant. John Lawrus the manager of the Botanic Park is directing our efforts. We were already on-exercise before Grace arrived, so real training like this is priceless for us we are also going to be setting up an aid station at East End Civic Centre.

Botanic Park General Manager John Lawrus expressed his appreciation: “They Cayman regiment has been helping massively in heavy work such as removal of trees – lots of heavy equipment and mechanical repairs to our generator. You name it we are very grateful for the regiment and everyone who’s come out and helped support us today.”

Lieutenant Tyler Lawson had been in charge of a troop clearing beach Bay Road. “There were a couple of trees that collapsed near the main entrance to Beach Bay so we were just there removing them off the main roads and working them back to the beach and just clearing what we saw and we also helped remove some of the trees that had collapsed onto people’s roofs. I love helping people like this.”

Lieutenant Lawson joined up with the very first cohort in August 2020 and was one of the recruits selected to attend the British Army’s military academy at Sandhurst which trains army officers. It was tough, he said, not only doing the training but getting used to the freezing cold weather too. At the age of 20, now, he is making the Cayman Islands proud.

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