Fire destroyed a house at Time and Patience district in Linstead, St. Catherine, shortly before daybreak today, leaving eight adults and two children without a place to live.
Head of the Linstead Fire Station, District Officer Donovan Farquharson, said his officers are still trying to ascertain the cause of the blaze, adding that the estimated loss is $14 million.
He told The Beacon that fire personnel received a call about the inferno at 2:15AM and responded immediately.
“On the scene, we were using two medium jets; we had to call for back-up from Spanish Town. A matter of fact, we responded along with our ambulance,” District Officer Farquharson further said.
Meanwhile, one of the survivors, Tori Fullwood, stated that the family suspects that the fire, which started on the veranda, is a case of arson.
“We don’t know how the fire started, but we know it is not wiring issues. We just feel to ourselves that it is a foul-play,” she commented.
Fullwood further stated that she was awakened some time after 1AM by a commotion outside the house.
“Persons were passing by and they saw the fire on the veranda. They were banging on the grille for us to wake up because the fire was growing. They actually helped us; they were throwing sand; they were throwing water and all of that,” she explained.
“I woke up and went into the room and I woke up everybody, then I went for the key and I opened the grille so everybody could come out.”
Fullwood further told The Beacon that her family lost all furniture, appliances, clothing and other items that were inside the house, which the family inherited from her great-grandmother.
She appealed for help.
“It is 10 of us; we basically don’t have anything more; everything burn to the ground. The only thing I was able to save was my work computer because I got it yesterday to come home and start work from home,” added Fullwood, who works in Half Way Tree at a store operated by telecoms company Flow.
She said the blaze happened at a time when the family was undertaking some repairs at the house.
“We were just starting to fix up the house actually, because it is [Christmas] holiday and we see some stuff that needed to be done. Wi buy tiles and tiled out the kitchen. Everything gone down the drain.”
Fullwood, in the meantime, expressed gratitude that no one was injured.
“I am just holding on right now because my family is OK; no one died; no one is injured. That is all that matters to be right now – all that matters,” she further told The Beacon.
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