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Jun 26, 2001

Fire guts Burrell Boom primary school

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It has educated several generations of Burrell Boom residents, but overnight that village’s only primary school was hit by fire. When the flames died down a building and its contents belonging to the Methodist school lay in ruins. The blaze erupted around midnight and according to the PTA’s public relations officer, Brad Pattico, it appears to be the result of a malicious act.

Brad Pattico, Public Relations Officer, PTA

“There was a passer-by who was passing in his pickup truck and they ran and they told the principal, who came over about a little after 12:00 and saw everything going up in flames. There was a tank at the back, and some of the neighbours said that they came out, two fellows, and they lifted the butane tank and pulled it out of that way. This was one of those, maybe about fifty-five gallons or more. They pulled that out of the way to prevent anymore serious burning of the building itself. They said this morning that when they tried to more it, they couldn’t.”

Ann-Marie Williams

“What did the school lose?”

Brad Pattico

“We had seven computers that burnt up. This building also house the library and all the books are burnt. If you look in there, you’d see books looking like toasted bread. And then the kitchen, which was for the feeding programme, also got burnt out. So that means that all the stoves, the refrigerator, the three freezers that we have, they were all burnt. We also understand that the scouts were getting ready to go on a retreat out here at Camp Oakley. All their equipment, everything that they had put together, their pots, pans and everything, all got burnt. This is something that I feel the whole village felt, this was a big loss.”

Principal Thomas Oliver says parents, teachers and students raised thousand of dollars to assist with furnishings that were destroyed. The cause of the fire is still unknown.

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