A Non Pareil, East Coast Demerara family is still reeling from the shock of watching the house they moved into just three months ago, go up in flames yesterday.
The fire believed to be of electrical origin which started at about 13:00hrs, completely ravaged the two flat concrete building, leaving the family with a few personal belongings that they were able to save while the fire raged.
At the time of the fire, five of the seven persons who lived in the house were at home.
Shane Persaud, one of the occupants, believes that the fire was electrical in origin, since it started mere minutes after the electricity came on after the third power outage for the morning.
Persaud recalled that he was in the veranda of the building when the electricity was restored.
His cousin Alecia Gonzales was in the second bedroom, while his younger brother was asleep in the back bedroom.
“Whole morning the current went on and off….about three times it went off…. then when it come back on come, about two minutes after, I smell smoke and I watch over the road to see if it was the neighbour burning something,” Persaud said.
That, however, was not the case, and when he turned his attention back to his house, he saw fire in the middle of the hall.
“By the time I open the (verandah) door and watch in the hall, I holler fuh see if anybody upstairs and I ain’t get no answer. De whole hall was in smoke and flames so I couldn’t do nothing. And I run downstairs,” Persaud recalled.
Downstairs, he found his cousin Alecia and his two sisters, but his little brother was nowhere around.
Frantically he screamed his brother’s name and soon realized that he was still trapped in his bedroom.
“I holler for he and I see he jump from the back hey and jump from the top of the veranda.”
The house is owned by Persaud’s mother Bevon Austin, who had earlier left to transport her parents to Parika.
She was informed of the tragedy and hurried back home only to see the house she had purchased last year crumbling as a result of the intense heat.
A neighbour recalled hearing children screaming from inside the building and an alarm was raised and several persons ran to the scene but could do nothing at first, since the blaze was threatening.
After several minutes residents braved the heat and managed to save some household items.
The family’s pet dogs were also subsequently rescued minutes after they got lost in the ensuing confusion.
They noted that the fire service was contacted but it took them almost 30 minutes to reach the scene.
“This place could’a save because when we call the fire service, wall and so didn’t come down, but they tek long,” one resident told this newspaper.
Residents lamented the need for a fire station to be closer to the villages on the mid East Coast of Demerara as whenever there is a fire it takes quite a while for fire tenders to reach to where the fire is.
Residents also lamented the length of time the Guyana Power and Light took to respond also.
They claimed that when the called the GPL hotline they got no response.
This newspaper reached the scene after the Guyana Fire Service and the GPL crew was nowhere around even as wire leading to the house continued to spark, creating a hazard for the firefighters and potential helpers.
Aug 24, 2019Guyana’s fortunes at the female football development level continued its encouraging results trend when the Under-17 Lady Jags hammered St. Vincent & the Grenadines 6-2 in the opening game of a...
U.S. President Donald Trump’s new rule on immigration and nationality, published on Monday, August 12, is not different... more
Editor’s Note, If your sent letter was not published and you felt its contents were valid and devoid of libel or personal attacks, please contact us by phone or email.
Feel free to send us your comments and/or criticisms.
Contact: 624-6456; 225-8452; 225-8458; 225-8463; 225-8465; 225-8473 or 225-8491.
Or by Email: [email protected] / [email protected]