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Mar 21, 2022

Fire at Barracks on Caesar Ridge Displaces Residents

On Saturday night, a fire broke inside the barracks at the corner of Caesar Ridge and Faber’s Road in Belize City. Fire-fighters were quick to respond and contain the flames, but not before it destroyed the apartment in which the fire broke out. Today the entire building is still without electricity as the occupants are trying to recover from the water damaged that they sustained. Fortunately, no one was injured in the fire.


Karla Heusner, Reporting

Over a dozen persons have been affected by a fire that broke on Saturday night inside an apartment complex in Belize City. Soon after the fire started, the power went out and the national fire service was able to contain the blaze.


Kenneth Mortis, Station Supervisor, Belize National Fire Service

“We observed the upper portion of a cement two story complex; heavy flames came from the centre of that building. We quickly tried to extinguish the fire before losing adjacent structures and neighbouring avenues of fire spreads. After which, we tried to conduct an investigation to the cause and origin of the fire. The immediate area of origin where the fire started, a total of five family members was displaced from that unit. Going on to the right, we had a total of five which including a single mother and her four children. To the left of the complex, the total figure wasn’t brought to my office as yet. I can tell you probably two, three—maybe more, maybe less. Right about now, we’re looking an approximate figure of eleven to twelve people being displaced by Saturday’s fire.”


Kenneth Mortis

The fire started inside a room in the apartment at the center of the upper flat and spread quickly to displace the occupants of the entire building. A fourteen-year-old boy living with a disability lit a mattress on fire.


Kenneth Mortis

“What we have gathered is that the family for a fourteen-year-old minor, apparently they child was in the room by himself while the family was out, and in his inquisitive nature, he got mischievous and lit a portion of the building on fire. The family and other neighbours, they only became aware of the fires when they saw smoke emitting the building. The family members outside had to physically break down the door as he had then locked himself in the building. That’s the unfortunate situation.  Fortunately for this scenario here, he escaped the burning building without any physical damage. And, I do believe he was taken to the nearby ambulance just to make sure everything is okay.”


While no one was injured, there has been a lot of water damage.


Voice of: Shauna Herrera, Property Damaged by Water

“I was in here, inna my house. My son was doing his home work around the table, and I was in the chair with my two kids. And, I hear a lee commotion pan the outside. So, I tell my lee son, ah seh “buss the door” – cuz I usually keep my big door shub a lee bit – so I tell he, “buss the door and see weh the go on”. But when my son buss the door dah because wah flame and fire di buss een. They time deh dah like the smoke done get black black black, so all I couldah mi think fi do dah get out my kid dey and try get out the gas tank. I d feel fi d gas tank cuz in no di see due to the smoke. All I do dah feel fi the gas tank, grab a knife, cut the hose, and I throw that through the back door. And that was it right there. We come down. It was frightening because it was more that weh we mi di expect.

All my stuff get messed up, everything fi me, you know. All of my house appliances get messed up, and I dah wah single mother and I di try, and like mein this hard fi me. This kinda stressful. First time I experience something like this too. This really stressful fi me cuz my kids they go dah school and then we noh have no kind of electricity.”


Station Supervisor Kenneth Mortis says that it could have been a huge disaster were it not for residents who assisted on the ground.


Kenneth Mortis

“It could have been worse…we could have probably had lives accounted for. We could have lost an entire block. I am grateful for those non-fire-fighters who turned themselves into a fireman in that particular moment. My fire-fighting team only comprise of six on duty personnel initially, and then we were accompanied by another four off duty personnel. So we had enough firemen on the scene. Again, I want to keep thanking those fellows that committed in to assisting us in taking care of this.”


Karla Heusner for News Five.

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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