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Dec 30, 2010

Police Sergeant and family left homeless after Wednesday night blaze

Many have been left homeless in a spate of fires over the past week. In the latest, a police sergeant and her family were left out in the cold after a blaze swept through their house on Trinity Boulevard on Wednesday night. It is not a good way to start the New Year, for Sergeant Carla Gamboa and family who had just refurbished the house. The fire started in the room of her young son, who alerted the sleeping household. Gamboa was injured but the rest of the occupants managed to get out of harm’s way. News Five’s Delahnie Bain reports.

Delahnie Bain, Reporting

As we head into what is known as the “maaga season”, a Belize City family is in for even more trying times after they lost all their belongings in a fire on Wednesday night.

Voice of: Windell Pope, Fire Victim

“I was in the room sleeping, laying down and my lady call me to come to the next room and the fire was already running on the wall and the roof. So they run outside and I went to get my pants and shirt. On my way out, the flame was already flaming high, I reached downstairs and the window start to burst out. That was it. We wait for the fire truck. All the neighbors call for the fire truck. They came but they came on their own timing you know.”

Delahnie Bain

“Did you manage to get anything out?”

Voice of: Windell Pope

“We got a couple shirt and blouse out but nothing really. It’s everything. She had everything in there. Just buy brand new fridge for the Christmas, already give away the old one. She had everything for real.”

michael middleton

Michael Middleton, Operations Officer, National Fire Service

“We got the call at nine-fifty-five of a fire on Trinity Street. We responded and we found the house fully engulfed in flames. We got into operation and extinguished the fire. Immediately investigations began. The owner of the house is one Miss Carla Gamboa. She occupied it with her husband, two kids and another gentleman by the name of Keith Cruz.”

The investigations continued this morning and the fire service was finally able to ascertain the cause of the blaze this afternoon.

Michael Middleton

“Our final investigations revealed that the fire actually started in one of the rear bedrooms and the cause of the fire is actually electrical in nature.  It was quite a challenge because the area is an area that does not have adequate water supply. But we managed to contain the fire and extinguish it with what we have.”

Delahnie Bain

“No other houses around got damaged?”

Michael Middleton

“No, no other houses in the neighborhood were damaged by the fire.”

According to Windell Pope, one of the occupants, the house went up in flames hours after he finished painting the verandah.

Voice of: Windell Pope

“I guess this is the new years. We wanted to have a rasta but we needed the black paint. I guess this is how the black you know.  Last night I spent the night at my dad’s house with my girl but that was just for the night. I don’t know what’s up really yet.”

Michael Middleton

“The lady, Miss Gamboa, she received some burns to her hand. Her other hand got sprained and she received a cut under one of her feet.”

Voice of: Windell Pope

“Just little burns my girl and my step-kid got on their arm. My girl get it on her forehead.”

The loss is estimated at around a hundred thousand dollars, but Pope says the house was insured. Delahnie Bain for News Five.

There was a similar fire in Dangriga on Wednesday. And on Monday, a small house in Belize City was also destroyed by fire.

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