Mar 11, 2014 News
A fire suspected to be of electrical origin, completely destroyed the upper flat of a two-storey house located at Lot 203 Deobrian Street, Prashad Nagar, yesterday, leaving a family of three homeless.
Onica Pompey, who shared the house with her boyfriend, Robert Power, and her son, said that the fire started around 7:00 am.
“I just lying in bed when I heard cracking sounds coming from the roof. I thought it was the pigeons and I didn’t think anything of it. My boyfriend had been preparing breakfast; he came and told me to get up. When I got up I saw the smoke and then the flames,” Pompey said.
While the couple could not estimate their losses, Pompey said that the fire destroyed millions of dollars worth of personal items, clothing and antique furniture.
“It must have started in ceiling of the bedroom. We are just thankful because it could have been worse. We didn’t get to save much, except our documents. My boyfriend was able to save our laptops and a dining table but as we tried to save as much as possible but the computers were stolen in midst of the rush.”
Kaieteur News understands that police arrested two for looting.
Residents claimed that the fire which ruined the building also scorched the exterior of neighbouring houses.
When Kaieteur News visited the location, the blaze had been already contained. However, residents who witnessed the inferno recounted that the incident caused “quite a stir,” in the usually quiet neighbourhood.
“I was in kitchen when I heard glass breaking. I didn’t think anything of it at first but then I saw smoke and looked out my back door to see that flames had completely engulfed the upper flat of the house and I started to shout for my husband,” a female occupant of a neighbouring house related.
The woman said that she alarmed several other residents. “We just panicked at first, and a crowd began to gather.”
“We tried to call the fire service but the calls went unanswered then we sought the assistance of neighbour, who contacted someone to get on to the fire department.
“That‘s when three fire trucks pulled up and helped to contain the blaze. We are just thankful that no one was hurt and the fire was contained before other houses got destroyed.”
A press release from the Guyana Power and Light, (GPL) stated that the company has regularly put into practice the necessary security measures, at the instance of fires.
“It is important to understand that service disconnection and restoration as it relates to community fires is of paramount importance to the Guyana Power Light Inc. (GPL).
“GP&L will disconnect a customer or customers’ electrical service during a fire following a report. The Company will take all necessary safety measures required once we have received a report and/or identified a hazardous situation that can result in fires.
“As a result of the fire at Prashad Nagar, the power was disconnected to all customers connected to the F9 Feeder. The communities affected for just under an hour from 07:54hrs were Prashad Nagar, Kitty and Campbelville.”
GPL further advised that in accordance with the electrical regulations, customers should have their premises recertified every 10 years which would aid greatly in mitigating the dangers associated with old wiring and fires of electrical origin.
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