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Sep 8, 2021

Fire Guts Home on Mahogany Street

A fire that began around eleven a.m. has left a tenant devastated at the loss of her belongings and bad luck, since this is the second fire she has been through. News Five was at the scene on Mahogany Street in Belize City today and spoke to area residents who tried to help and to victim Deborah Sutherland.


Voice of: Eyewitness 

“We mih deh the fix a car, pan the street side we mih the fix a car and the mess with it and thing and when we look we see wah room deh pan fire just pan off of the lone roof top. Me and the man weh the fix the car, we run upstairs eena the house, and when we gawn upstairs and check the house deh pan padlock. So, we try fih open the door, but we can’t open the door.”


Paul Lopez, Reporting

The men were unable gain access to the room where the fire began, because it was locked.


Voice of: Eyewitness 

“We meet the old man up the deh try out it, but when we look the whole place done surrounded with smoke and deh deh, so all we get fuh do dah plug out the gas tank and get it down stairs, and tek the old man out ah the house and ker a downstairs. When we spin back the whole house done deh pan fire. Look like somebody left one something eena the room and the room lock with a padlock. And, we can’t get the room fuh open.”


The man they met inside the house at the time of the fire was Deborah Sutherland’s brother.  She rents the upper flats where she lives with her brother and her boyfriend.


Deborah Sutherland

Deborah Sutherland, Fire Victim

“I feel weak. I feel empty. I just feel… idk how I feel.”


Sutherland was in deep distress, because this is the second time she has lost all her belongings to a house fire.


Deborah Sutherland

“Everything gawn, all that dah weh I think bout, weh I need you know. I nuh have no way fih guh. I nuh know how I wah sleep tonight. I only have this clothes pan my body. I nuh worry about the stuff deh. I just need a shelter. I need somewhere fih guh. I need a house.”


Area Representative for Pickstock Division, Anthony Mahler was nearby.


Anthony Mahler

Anthony Mahler, Area Representative, Pickstock

“It is a very, very difficult situation for anybody to go through. And, this family is a hard working family. And they lost everything in their home. Just like a lot of Belizeans who don’t own their own home, this one lost their home. We are going to do everything possible to help them to get back to a normal life.”


The fearless eyewitness who quickly sprang into action says he was not afraid for his life as he was only trying to help as best as he could. He wished, however, that the fire department had responded faster.


Voice of: Eyewitness 

“The place deh to far fuh fire right now. I nuh really know weh the people deh the duh. Deh have the place to far. Suh when fire do happen, ih hard, house done end up the bun down, because fire place deh to far fih deal with the problem. And, when deh come yah, no watta eena the truck. Deh have to get watta way off the main street. Sih how much hose deh run, bout two, three hundred feet a hose from of the main to come through the side street.”


Deborah Sutherland has been assisting patients at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital all through Covid-19 as is a dietary aid. She is the one now in need of assistance to rebuild her life.


Deborah Sutherland

“I lef my bredda the sleep because he neva feel good, cause he sick. I know ih neva feel good cause dah pain ih got. Suh, when I hear that I start cry because all I the think I lef my bredda een deh. My bredda the een deh. Please mek ih mek it out. All I the look fah when I sih, the first person when I run yah, dah fuh sih he. I run and hug up ah because he dah the most important thing more than everything weh I lose, most important to me.”


Reporting For News Five, I am Paul Lopez.


The Fire Service says the cause of the blaze is still undetermined, but suspect an electrical appliance may have started it. 

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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