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Sep 24, 2019

B.E.L. to Garner Assistance for Fire Victims

Seleny Villanueva Pott

Following the blaze, Belize Electricity Limited issued a statement expressing condolences to the Chub family.  B.E.L. says that it takes its role seriously in providing safe and reliable electricity and its officials met with Chairlady Seleny Villanueva Pot and fire officials.  The chairlady says that one of the challenges that villagers face during the time of the fire was that electrical lines near the building were active; some twenty-five minutes after the fire broke.


Seleny Villanueva Pott, Chairlady of Caye Caulker

“When we saw the fire and the lines were popping, live wires were dangling. I went over to B.E.L. and I asked them, could you please turn off the power, we are having a fire and we need you to turn off the electricity. The gentleman explained to me that he has protocols in place. He needs to get directives from central office and they will direct to him which phase it will be done. I don’t know if he couldn’t get through with his superiors but it took us about twenty to twenty-three minutes before the power was cut. When he cut the power, instead of cutting the power in phases the whole island was without power for a short time. That in itself posed a threat because then B.W.S.L. was without water at that time. Going forward and I have met with B.E.L. we are demanding that that we linesmen on ground. Caye Caulker only has a small office with a small staff. For emergency we really need men on ground that are able to give commands immediately. In a fire everybody knows that twenty to twenty-five minutes is a lot of time loss and lives being loss or homes being loss in that short span. So we are hoping and B.E.L. has committed to us that we will have that team before the end of next month.”

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