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Local firefighters tackle beginnings of chimney fire

foto 122018 incendi 2Formentera firefighters were called into action Thursday to put out a small fire in a single-family dwelling in Porto Saler.

112 notified the brigade of the flames, confined to the home's chimney, shortly before 3.00pm. A three-man crew riding in the fire engine was joined by two local police and a number of civil protection officers.

The first responders came on the smoke-filled scene and proceeded, though not before verifying no injuries were suffered nor serious damage incurred, to air out the residence.

When the chimney cooled, a decomposing bird carcass was removed that had hindered proper ventilation, led to stray sparks in the duct and obstructed the flue.

The operation was completed within twenty-five minutes after the call was received.

Formentera's mobility plan becomes reality

foto 201812 ple 1When the Formentera Council celebrated its December plenary assembly today in the conference hall of the dependent care facility, the session featured definitive approval for  the island's “Sustainable Mobility Strategy” (Pla de Mobilitat Sostenible).

Mobility councillor Rafael González described the action plan, now on track for a 2019 rollout, “as a roadmap guiding how Formentera residents will get around on the island over the next several years”. “The steps we're taking now are bringing us closer to sustainbility”, said the councillor, “and improving the island for islanders, but our task is also to ensure our visitors see those differences that set us apart from other destinations”.

The new plan strives for a landscape in which cars relinquish some terrain in order to favour other more sustainable kinds of mobility like bycicles or public transport.

Land for low-cost public housing

Today's session came with cross-party support for a proposed land-use deal whereby property owners, who expressed their buy-in as well, will hand over portions of land to the Council for public use and municipal equipment.

Plans are in place for the 775m2 plot, which has a development potential of 1.2m2 per metre squared and is zoned for 60% occupancy on the ground and first floors, to be used by the Balearic housing authority (IBAVI) for low-cost public housing.

Other measures

Also securing unanimous support were measures from the Gent per Formentera (GxF) cabinet about taxi fares and ratification of nominations for representatives and stand-ins for the various sections of the Consell d'Entitats.

Winning the support of GxF and Compromís despite failing to secure conservative backing was a Socialist measure concerning Formentera's adhesion to a bike-friendly city project encouraging Madrid to update national ordinances in urban spaces so that the default speed limit is 30K/h. The project is headed by a group called “Network of Cities for Bikes” (Red de Ciudades por la Bicicleta).

Formentera sees ban on excursions as essential part of 'Maritime Transport Act'

foto consell 2018President Jaume Ferrer wishes to report that the Formentera Council has submitted representations concerning the regional government's proposed Decret de Transport Marítim, or “Maritime Transport Act” during the period for public hearings. According to the Council chair, the administration's greatest concern lay in “how the act deals with the issue of regular maritime transport” and maintains an “absolute embrace of its prohibition of single-day organised trips to Formentera”.

As part of the appeal, the administration lobbied for an act that includes “guaranteed Formentera-Eivissa ferry connections early in the morning and late at night, a ban on departure time overlap between transport companies and full accessibility for individuals with reduced mobility”.

Ferrer also highlights the administration's full support for the proposed ban on so-called excursions turístiques (“tourist excursions”) and confides that “any walking back of previous requests in that direction is not on the table”. In fact, the CiF chair maintained it was “crucial the Maritime Transport Act put an end to the current situation and offer solutions to the issues of overcrowding that plague the island in summer”. “Taking this act forward makes sense”, says the president, “because it tracks with Formentera's own legislation on environmental and financial sustainability which has already received approval in committee”.

Ferrer hopes the act will be operational before the close of this legislative term, and applauded the administration of Francina Armengol for honouring a three-year-old commitment —to put in place a system regulating entry and egress— which he described as “indispensable for Formentera”.

Time for holidays, maintenance as Formentera's vehicle inspection service takes annual leave

foto itv 2018The Formentera Council announces that the island's vehicle inspection service (ITV) will cease operations for the month from Friday December 21 to Friday January 25.

The break means time off for staff and a chance to take care of maintenance around the facility. In recent weeks the office has expanded hours and staff have taken on afternoon shifts to cope with high demand and clear names from its wait list. The retooling has pushed employee workload up 25%.

The ITV will resume operations on Monday January 28, not only in the office for administrative work and appointment scheduling but also the garage. The Monday to Friday service is open from 8.30am to 2.00pm, and can be reached by telephone at 971 32 31 30 or email at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Formentera lines up basic course for firefighters

foto curs bombers 2018 3The president's office of the Formentera Council reports that a basic firefighting course will be held on Formentera December 10-22.

Intended for aspiring firefighters on the island who have successfully completed the selective process and are listed in Formentera's pool of job seekers, the 72-hour course mixes textbook-based and hands-on learning and is tuned for the realities of service needs on the island.

Instruction will cover first aid, traffic accidents, hazardous goods, work at height, indoor and outdoor fires, and a control and command module.

About 15 students will take part in the course, designed and driven by a nine-person team of healthcare teachers and veteran firefighters from the Emergency Staff company.

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