Nine persons are now homeless after a fire of unknown origin ripped through a two-flat concrete house at No 40 Village, West Coast Berbice around 2:30 pm yesterday.
Nelta Campbell, 40, who lived in the bottom flat with her husband, three of her children and an elderly relative said she was at home when she heard neighbours shouting “fire! fire!”
She ran out to see the thick smoke coming from the upper flat that was occupied by her mother and two of her other grandchildren. At the time of the fire her mother was in Georgetown while the children were at school.
A large crowd gathered at the scene upon seeing the blaze. Some of the residents assisted Campbell, who had started to panic, to throw some of her household belongings by the roadside.
She was distressed that some of the items, including her flat-screen television set still got damaged during the process as well as while the firefighters were dousing the building.
The woman said that by the time the fire tender from the nearby Onverwagt Fire Station arrived at the scene the building was already engulfed. They managed to contain the blaze and prevent it from spreading to the two neighbouring buildings.
She believed that the fire spread quickly because “one room alone had six mattresses,” which could have aided the blaze.
The occupants of both flats had no place to stay until a neighbour offered to keep them for the night under her bottom house.