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May 11, 2004

Fire destroys city home

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As fires go, this morning’s occurrence wasn’t a major conflagration…but don’t tell that to a Belize City woman who no longer has a place to call home. Patrick Jones has more.

Patrick Jones, Reporting

The pre-dawn blaze at number 3194 Coffin Street destroyed the one-bedroom plywood and stucco house occupied at the time by Marilyn Henry. According to Fire Chief, Henry Baizar, not even a quick response from the fire-fighters could save the building.

Henry Baizar, Fire Chief

“We got he call at ten minutes after three this morning and we responded with two vehicles. On arrival there we found the house engulfed in flames. The guys quickly got in operation and within five to ten minutes the structure was out.”

Patrick Jones

“Could anything have been done to save the structure?”

Henry Baizar

“Nothing could have been done to save the structure when we arrived there. I don’t know why we got the call that late, but these houses burn pretty fast. And one truck responded from here and one truck responded from near on Dolphin Street and when they got there the house was already engulfed in flames.”

Preliminary investigations reveal that no one was inside the building when the fire started. And while electrical fault has been ruled out as a possible cause, Baizar says the fire did start from within the building. It is the speed with which it spread that has left a lot of unanswered questions.

Henry Baizar

“Well the thing, that when you look at the remains that were found, there is nothing to show that there was a shortage or anything to that effect.”

Patrick Jones

“Could it have been started from the stove?”

Henry Baizar

“Well we don’t think it start from the stove either.”

Patrick Jones

“Is this a case of arson?”

Henry Baizar

“I am not saying so. We are following some leads and we are getting some samples and those are will be tested and as soon as we can determine for sure that is what start the fire, then we will make a decision then.”

No one was injured in the blaze and it is not sure if the house which belongs to Helen Usher, who resides in the United States, was insured. Patrick Jones, for News 5.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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