Derelict vehicles
Derelict vehicles were loaded onto barges in Pockwood Pond for removal. (Photo: GIS)

More than 700 derelict vehicles have been tagged and removed from Tortola and Virgin Gorda in recent months, according to Department of Waste Management Director Marcus Solomon.

“We have also removed scrap metals as well as bulk waste such as refrigerators, stoves, washing machines and BVI Electricity Corporation scrap metals,” Mr. Solomon said in a Dec. 22 press release.

“So those are the materials we are currently processing to export out of the country. We just want to thank members of the public for helping us identify the scrap metals and derelict vehicles that needed to be removed so that we can keep the territory clean.”

derelict vehicles
Mountains of derelict vehicles were processed in Pockwood Pond before removal via barge. (Photo: GIS)
VI company

The project is being carried out by Virgin Islands company KNJ General Maintenance, which launched the current removal operation on Dec. 11 in Virgin Gorda before moving to Tortola on Dec. 13, the press release stated.

Mr. Solomon — who took up his post in July — said he hopes the project will be completed in the coming days.

“We want to finish the operation and bring back the storage area to a pristine state again,” he said. “So all the derelict vehicles will be on the barge, and those items that are not for the barge will be moved to our Pockwood Pond site.”

Earlier this year, KNJ General Maintenance processed and removed more than 2,000 tons of derelict vehicles and other scrap metals from the territory, the release stated, adding that it was exported to Colombia and recycled.

The vehicles were piled high in Pockwood Pond (above) before they were removed (below). (Photos: GIS)

‘Retire Your Ride’

The DWM launched the “Retire Your Ride” campaign in August, providing a website for residents to report derelict vehicles.

By October, the department had removed nearly 300 derelict vehicles from areas across the territory, Mr. Solomon said that month.

“From Aug. 16 to now, we have tagged 347 derelict vehicles and removed 271 based on information shared by the public,” Mr. Solomon said in an Oct. 11 press release.

“We cannot underestimate the importance of this accomplishment, and we just wanted to take time out [to] show appreciation to the community and to encourage them to continue to partner with us to ensure a cleaner, greener and more beautiful BVI.”

Mr. Solomon added at the time that many of the vehicles were recovered with the help of residents.

“From the moment that the campaign launched, the department’s phone and email have been inundated with community-minded individuals pointing them in the right direction to the derelicts throughout the community,” he said.