ANTIGUA – Arson suspected in landfill fire

ST JOHN’S –– Firefighters worked well into last night to subdue a massive blaze at Cooks Landfill which employees believe is an act of arson.

The fire, which started around 2 p.m. yesterday, sent massive plumes of thick, black, smoke visible from several miles away, high up in the air.

The black smoke that accompanied the fire rose high into the sky.
The black smoke that accompanied the fire rose high into the sky.

The cause of the fire is not yet known, but two employees of the Solid Waste Management Authority told Observer media that “a young man” was seen setting fire to old tyres.

The workers said in their experience burning tyres were difficult to put out, but added “we think we can do it today”.

Solid waste operations manager Fitzgerald Lewis who was on the scene, said: “We can’t say anything on this before we do our investigations.”

Lewis said his immediate priority was to “put out the fire and deal with it”.

Members of the St John’s Fire Station sent three trucks to the scene and firefighters were seen hosing water down the inferno.

The fire caused a major backlog of trucks, which were lined up to deliver refuse to the landfill. The garbage haulers were moving material from various parts of the country, as the nation prepared for Tropical Storm Danny.

Eyewitnesses said as daylight faded yesterday, the black smoke from the burning tyres had not cleared up.

(Antigua Observer)

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