Fri | Aug 18, 2017

Narrow escape from burning car

Published:Tuesday | March 15, 2016 | 3:00 AMChristopher Serju
A man takes a photo of Rohan Bailey's car which caught fire on Shannon Drive, Kingston, yesterday.

After watching helplessly as his 2006 Mazda 6 motor car burned yesterday, Rohan Bailey then had to pay a wrecker $14,000 to take the burnt-out shell to his home because the Newport West Police Station where he reported the matter did not have space on its premises to house the burnt-out vehicle.

In fact, at 1:37 p.m., more than three hours after his narrow escape from the burning vehicle, the police had not yet taken an official statement on the matter.

"I was supposed to go back to the police station to make a report because the officer who took the statement initially was not there, and they said I should come back at 2 p.m.," the distraught young man told The Gleaner.

Bailey, an employee of Lannaman and Morris (Shipping) Limited, Newport West, was driving to work when along Shannon Drive, the road adjacent to Kingston Container Terminals, things changed dramatically.

heard bang

He explained: "I just coming as normal, and as I came around the corner, I heard a sound. It made a bang sound. I just pressed the gas to see what was happening and no power. The car wasn't running, so I just let it throttle and I pull over. I saw smoke.

"But by the time I saw smoke and I tried to fly the bonnet, the truck guys were coming and saying, 'Pull the bonnet', but it was so engulfed in smoke I couldn't pull it, and they came with the fire extinguisher, but we couldn't open it because it was engulfed in flames," he shared with The Gleaner.

From the time he heard the sound until the car erupted into flames took no more than 30 seconds, but Bailey had the presence of mind to grab the car papers, his phone, and his glasses before bolting from the vehicle.

The vehicle was comprehensively insured.

With this major exit road from the wharf blocked, the police were quick on the scene and took charge of the situation, directing traffic out of the premises. However, by the time a fire engine arrived, the car was burnt out. Their activities were confined to cooling-down operations.

christopher.serju@gleanerjm.com