Today’s fire in the Conch Shell Bay area of the city ended in tragedy and yesterday was a close call for a family in Hunter’s Alley just off Kelly Street. According to Oren Smith of the National Fire Service the fire was the result of a minor playing with matches.
“Yesterday’s incident occurred on Hunter’s Lane where we responded and that fire was quickly dealt with. The occupant at home a male was there and fortunately he had evacuated with the child so that child survived.”
“That was a result of what?”
“The information revealed that the minor might have been experimenting with fire in a bedroom and hence the occurrence of fire. Unfortunately we have had two loss of life where a minor perished in a fire and yesterday could have been a third.”
Within the period on one month, fire officials have seen two minors perishing in a house fire whilst two others had to be flown abroad for intensive burns to their bodies. Smith says that these situations can be prevented if proper plans and precautions are put in place.
“I would appeal to parents and guardians to exercise extreme caution, educate these children that fire is dangerous and that things like matches, candles and stoves are tools for adults to use. Parents should not leave those things in easy reach of children. For those parents who may smoke at home I appeal to them to not to leave matches and lighters in easy reach of children or don’t even ask children to go and get you these tools and bring them to you so that you can light up, that is in itself encouraging the minor to play with these things because when you are not around and they are there in easy reach they will pick them up and they will play with them.”
For the month of October there have been eight fires reported countrywide; five in the Belize District, two in the Cayo District and one in the Stann Creek District.