Mon | Aug 19, 2019

Massive blaze consumes business, home

Published:Wednesday | July 17, 2019 | 12:28 AM
Members of the Jamaica Fire Brigade on the scene of the burning Auto Spares House on Upper Ivy Road, off Lyndhurst Road in St Andrew, yesterday. The huge blaze, fuelled by gusts of wind, also resulted in a homeowner counting her losses as the flames wreaked havoc on her dwelling.
Members of the Jamaica Fire Brigade on the scene of the burning Auto Spares House on Upper Ivy Road, off Lyndhurst Road in St Andrew, yesterday. The huge blaze, fuelled by gusts of wind, also resulted in a homeowner counting her losses as the flames wreaked havoc on her dwelling.

When a St Andrew resident received a call at work to return home urgently yesterday, her heart skipped a beat.

She wasted no time in jumping into public transportation, only to discover on her arrival that a section of her house was ablaze.

With tears running down her face, the distraught woman yesterday lamented the loss of possessions that were reduced to charred debris.

The heavy plumes of smoke did not make things easy for firefighters who ran out of water on more than one occasion.

The anxious homeowner could barely be comforted as the angry flames consumed her house and Auto Spares House on Upper Ivy Road, off Lyndhurst Road.

“Mi tings dem wet up and bun up,” the resident, whose name The Gleaner was unable to ascertain, said as thick, black smoke rose and flames engulfed the building.

During the melee, an elderly man with office space on the property had to be lifted by firefighters to escape the flames and smoke.

Gusty winds fanned the flames, which caught a section of the property covered in dried leaves, grass and twigs, among other debris, as onlookers gathered.

As the flames consumed the left side of the building, persons began to try to remove items that they believe would fuel the fire as the flames crept towards the other side.

Soon residents began crying out, expressing concern that they could lose their homes because of the strong winds. They began venting their frustration at firefighters dispatched to the scene as they soon began to run out of water.

It was a case of déjà vu for Jethro Brown and Pearline Melhado, the occupants of a home adjacent to the warehouse. They said it was not the first time the Auto Spares property had caught fire as the roof had previously been burned.

The elderly residents said that if the bushes that grew along their fence had not been cut down this time around, they would probably have had more cause to worry.

Tiara Thompson