Fire station needed!

MP George Payne speaking with residents about the need for a fire station.
MP George Payne speaking with residents about the need for a fire station.

An early morning blaze which destroyed three houses at Belleplaine, St. Andrew, has led parliamentary representative for St. Andrew, George Payne to join with his constituents in making a call for the construction of a fire station in St. Andrew.

Payne, who was on the scene of the fire, made it clear that he was not calling for a fire station in every parish, but believed they should be at least fifteen miniutes drive from the scene of a fire.

The St. Andrew MP expressed the hope that the Ministry of Housing and the officers of the Rural Development Commision would move swiftly to effect repairs to the houses that were damaged by the inferno.

Wilma Jordan whose house is located on the opposite side of the road from the fire, told a team from Barbados TODAY that it was around 4 a.m. when she felt the intense heat and noticed that the three houses were on fire.

After the Belleplaine blaze.
After the Belleplaine blaze.

The low water pressure which had been a cause of concern to many residents over the past three weeks, also presented major challenges for the firemen who responded to the early morning blaze.

In presenting “a strong case” for the construction of a fire station in St. Andrew, Jordan said: “The first fire tender from Arch Hall, St. Thomas, arrived at the scene 45 minutes after the fire had begun.”

Tenders attached to the fire stations at Four Roads, St. John and Probyn Street the City had to be pressed into service.

Marvel Hoyte, whose home was uninsured, told Barbados TODAY that she usually awoke around 4 a.m. and was alerted by her son that the three houses to the east of hers were on fire. The heat from the fire was so intense that it broke two windows in Hoyte’s home.

Meanwhile, Shurland Ramsey who lives in the house to the east of the unoccupied buildings reported that the three houses were owned by two brothers who live overseas, but who usually spend their vacations at the houses.

Ramsay revealed to the heat from the fire cracked two of his windows and singed the plastic which held the glass in place.

Ramsay further stated that the heat damaged the electricity meter and also burst a plastic pipe connected to his home.

He said if the water pressure was not so low “we could have salvaged some of the household effects” of the two brothers — Obrien Neblett, who lives in the US and Owen Neblett, who lives in the United Kingdom.

It was unclear whether the houses were insured. (NC)

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