Twenty-eight people, including a dozen children, have been left without shelter and their possession after a fire gutted their home in the early morning hours of Easter Sunday. The incident happened on Olga Marin Drive in Santa Rita Village, Corozal. The massive blaze completely destroyed four wooden structures in the yard and almost everything the people owned. One of the victims, twenty-four-year-old Keith Wallace spoke to LOVE News.
Keith Wallace, Fire Victim: “At about early Sunday morning we were sleeping, there was like four houses in the yard and we were sleeping in one of the front houses and it started with a big blazing and all of us in the yard we started trying to out it with water from the well and stuff like that but it went out of hand so none of us could do anything. We just tried to take people from out of the house and try to get them out of the yard because all four of the houses started catching fire. From twelve until the fire truck came they finished outing this almost around two in the morning because they came and they were spraying water for just like eight minutes and the water was all finished from the fire truck and they had to go back and come back again like almost three times they had to do that so we didn’t have time to save anything. We couldn’t save anything or nothing from the house it’s just the kids and everybody who was sleeping we just woke each other and got them outside because even the wire from the lampost was burning too and it started catching the other houses on fire too so we just had to get the kids and evacuate the area. Just my sisters mother in law got a slight burn on her forehead and her hand.”
According to Supervisor of the National Fire Service Kenneth Mortis cause of the fire is yet to be ascertained.
Kenneth Mortis, Station Supervisor: “We conducted our investigation through analysis of debris combined with information received from one of the occupants from where the fire started from, we would call that structure number two. Investigation and information led us to believe that the fire started as a result of a mosquito coil that had burnt off the stand and it fell into one of the card board boxes . I would want to say that that information is concrete but my intel in Corozal is leading me to believe otherwise. At this current moment the investigation is still ongoing as we do not want to be misleading the facts to the general populace to the exact cause of the fire.”
The ages of the victims range from six months to sixty-two years. If you would like to help, call 668-1481.
As authorities investigate this fire in the north, a man in the south is claiming that the loss of his house is the result of arson. Senior Correspondent Paul Mahung reports.
Paul Mahung, Toledo Correspondent: A suspected case of arson is believed to be the cause to the destruction of a house in Toledo. Easter Sunday night fire incident in Forest Home Village totally destroyed an uninsured bungalow wooden building with zinc roof and all household contents , the property of 35 year old Jason Anthony Ramclam.
Jason Ramclam, Fire Victim: “At the time of the fire I was not at home. I was visiting friends out. I visited my mom, my common law wife and I got a call about 7:15 P.M and they told me my house was on fire. So when I went the house was already engulfed in flames and they called the fire department and when the fire department reached there the house was already burned down so they just finished outing it and then from there they went and left. Someone or more than one person intentionally lit it because I have some conflict with some people in the village from Forest Home over some misunderstanding and they intentionally lit my house on fire and the people that did it are originally right from Forest Home Village.”
Paul Mahung, Toledo Correspondent: Ramclam commented that the building had no electricity and the fire incident put him in a situation of need.
Jason Ramclam, Fire Victim: “I’m calling on the public. I need some assistance with construction supplies or food stuff, clothing, finance or any way how they could assist me because I am homeless right now and I have to beg lodging at people’s houses and I really need that assistance. The loss of everything is $15,000 which I know is more than that but based on everything that was burned up I really can’t find out more of all the stuff that was burned but I give that estimate that that was the value of everything I had.”
Paul Mahung, Toledo Correspondent: Contact to fire victim Jason Ramclam can be made with family member Cancy Ramclam at phone number 651 1072.
Rounding off the tragic spate of fires was an early morning blaze in the south. At about five o’clock this morning firefighters were dispatched to Coco Supermarket in San Roman Village, Stann Creek District. Supervisor of the National Fire Service Kenneth Mortis told our newsroom how the partially lit structure was extinguished.
Kenneth Mortis, Station Supervisor: “Again our counterparts down south in Independence Village they were alerted of a structural fire over at the Coco Restaurant in San Roman Village. We arrived on the scene and fortunately because the structure was of a cement type the fire was contained primarily to the cashier’s section of that supermarket meaning the counters and the cashier part of the machine. We have concluded that investigation it has showed the fire started as a result of an electrical flaw and we as – per normal the proprietor of such an establishment have been advised that when he’s in the restoration stage to have his electrician look at the electrical wiring. This is another message that we keep trying to send out to these types of establishment and to residents alike your establishment under electrical wiring is only good for a certain amount of years it’s up to you the individual to find out exactly how often you should do the rewiring on these establishments.”
Love News understands that none of the structures destroyed by fire over the weekend were insured.