Grand Bahama fire officials are presently investigating a blaze that completely destroyed a home in Pinder’s Point and partially damaged another Wednesday afternoon.
The single storey, wooden structure was believed to have gone up in flames sometime around 1:00 p.m.
According to Sergeant #173 Lawrence Bethel, on arrival at the scene firefighters met the home fully engulfed in flames.
“By that time, the fire had already jumped over to another structure causing minor damages to the interior of the home,” Bethel said, adding that it left one totally destroyed and the other “inhabitable” with minor damages to the living-room area.
Still in their initial stages of investigations, fire officials have not yet determined the cause of the blaze. Police say the house has no electricity or running water.
They identified the occupant of the home as 42-year-old Wallace Hepburn, who is believed to have been living there with his girlfriend Clarece Farrington.
In the wake of this tragedy, authorities offered residents a few fire safety tips for the summer.
“We want to again advise residents that when leaving your homes to be sure that all stoves and electrical appliances are in the off position. With the Easter break coming up, we want to remind parents to keep all matches and fire-making devices away from the kids,” shared officer Bethel.
One onlooker, Jill Crith-field, of the Harvest Founda-tion Bahamas Chapter, said she saw “flames on the roof top and when we came out it was just covered in flames … It didn’t blow up or anything, but it burnt pretty quickly.”
She explained that at the Harvest Foundation, which has a community centre just across the street, they heard about the fire and would like to assist.
While at the scene The Freeport News learned that one of the units in Pinder’s Point had to be dispatched to the Eight Mile Rock area where a bush fire was raging out of control.
“Presently we are combatting two bush fires, one on Midshipman Road and the other in the Holmes Rock area,” the officer explained..
Noting that at the time the fires posed threats to homes in those areas, Bethel said two units were immediately dispatched to get them under control.
The officer then issued a warning to residents that lighting bush fires is an offence and punishable by law.
Just weeks ago a raging bush fire in Hanna Hill, Eight Mile Rock, that had been burning for days nearly destroyed the home of former Member of Parliament Rev. Lindy Russell.
Several weeks earlier residents of north and south Bahamia had their homes invaded by clouds of thick white smoke which lingered in the area for nearly three days, the result of a raging bush fire in that vicinity.
The smoke in various areas of that residential community forced many residents to close their windows and doors and leave the area, while some homeowners chose to stay and take precautionary measures to secure their properties.
One irate and concerned resident phoned into the newsroom complaining of the thick, noxious fumes that caused his wife to be transported to the hospital on three occasions for difficulties suffered from smoke inhalation during that incident.