Fire services respond to multiple fires on Sunday 10th May, 2020

The dwelling house of Reggie Burke on Victoria Street which was gutted by a fire – photo credit Cecil Clarke

The Dominica Fire and Ambulance Services Division responded to multiple fire calls on Sunday 10th May 2020. Two house Fires and eleven Bush Fires were responded to by crews around the island.

At approximately 4:59 am, crews at the Roseau Fire Station responded to a call at the landfill in Fond Cole; the said call involved fire within the landfill and crews were required to engage in firefighting procedures throughout the day. Two Fire Trucks and crew were required to challenge the blaze. Outside resources were needed to be employed in executing these procedures. Assistance came from DOWASCO in the form of the use of a water truck and ADA Trucking, with use of an excavator for movement of earth and debris. Operations at the Landfill were completed at approximately 5:20 pm.

At approximately 2:30 pm, the Roseau station also got information of a bush fire at Newtown. Information was relayed to crews at the Landfill and simultaneously, a crew was dispatched utilizing an ambulance to investigate. Information returning from the investigating crew at approximate 2:40pm indicated that vehicles near the fire were engulfed in flames. At approximately 2:50pm the first arriving fire truck and crew commenced firefighting procedures and were later joined by a second Truck and crew. The blaze involved eleven non-functional vehicles some of which were undergoing mechanical repairs and two building at Victoria Street: a mechanic garage owned by Mr. Reggie Burke was completely destroyed. A second unoccupied building, the Old Newtown Infant School, also sustained damage. Investigations into this fire are ongoing. Information though is suggesting that the fire resulted from persons burning debris in the area.

Additionally, at approximately 4:30pm, crews of the Roseau Fire Station responded to a bush fire in the King Hill area and at approximately 5:24pm also responded to a Bush Fire in the Glasgow area in Fond Cole. A call was also responded to at King Lane, Roseau at approximately 5:59pm. These fires were all extinguished. The Roseau Fire Station was again called into action in the Fond Cole/Glasgow area at approximately 8:20pm.

The Grandbay Fire Station on Sunday 10th May 2020 also responded to bush fires, responding to two calls during the day. One at approximately 2:06pm in the Grandbay Village area and the other at approximately 3:40pm, at Tete Morne. Both fires were extinguished without any significant damage to property.

Portsmouth Fire Station responding to three Bush Fires during the day: at about 1:26 pm in the community of Bioche, at 7:03pmin the Community of Bourne and at 8:37pm in the Community of Gutter. All fires were controlled and extinguished without significant damage.

On Sunday 10th May 2020 crews at the Melville Hall Fire Station responded to two Fire Calls, both of which were in the Community of Wesley. At approximately 12:00am a response was to a house fire in Wesley. The owner and sole occupier was Mr. Edmund Andrew of Wesley. No one was injured during the Blaze and investigations are still ongoing into the cause of the fire and the cost of damage. Crews at the Melville Hall Station also responded to a Bush Fire in Wesley on Sunday at approximately 4:00pm. The fire was controlled and subsequently extinguished without significant damage.

The Dominica Fire and Ambulance Services Division remains committed to protecting the life and property of citizens of the Commonwealth of Dominica and visitors to our shores. We extend our sincerest sympathy to all who lost property during these fires and continue to ask citizens to act responsibly with caution during the Dry Season and refrain from indiscriminate burning. All burning in Residential Areas should be terminated and burning for agricultural purpose should be done with utmost caution.

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  1. Galileo
    May 12, 2020

    I am not sure what is the intended purpose for the release of this information. However, if it is to quell the criticisms leveled by the public on their handling of the fire on Victoria st, it will not work. Rather it shows the the service is not ready for such massive situations and tells the story of The lack of capacity to deal with major or multiple situations.

    • Still I rise
      May 12, 2020

      Then do what you can to help them get ready👍

      • Galileo
        May 13, 2020

        You all are so shallow minded and accepting of mediocrity it makes sensible people feel like throwing up. However, that is how you behave until it really hits home. I do genuinely pray that you are never a victim of the incompetence in Dominica but sadly the world usually pays us for our deeds.

  2. Bird Parker
    May 11, 2020

    Well done the Dominica Fire and Ambulance Services .

  3. Shaka zulu
    May 11, 2020

    Thats a pretty busy weekend. I beard it has been pretty hot dry and windy. Excellent fire conditions. With the area being so hot and dry i say watch out for landslides and other surface movement this hurricane season when the rains come. Considering the limited equipment fire service has i can only imagine what it took to secure property and life. Thank God there was no loss of life. This should be a warning for what may happen in future and ensuring equipment and fire fighters are ready and trained to handle. It is always good to have an AAR (after action review) see what was done well, what was not done well and need to improve on. Also if there are new scenarios to consider and prep for. It is all part of professional development. Hang tight folks!!#

  4. Ibo France
    May 11, 2020

    No fire should be lit in open space without the approval of the police. Lots of praise to the Fire and Ambulance Service for extending themselves and extinguishing these fires. Job well done!

  5. greed
    May 11, 2020

    So what does that have to do with the price of rice and the fact that the man place was totally destroyed due to lack of equipment. I agree that it was a one time instant issue, cause not very often that magnitude of fire would happen with others….but that is what an emergency agency is about being prepared for the unknown. So what if the President’s compound was up in blaze while a section of PMH was also up in blaze, together with bush fire in St Joseph and one in Kingshill.

    This is a lame explanation from the Fire department. we have to just admit that the department is unable to handle more that one fire at a time. So guess what no time for excuses and blaming. Accept the fact, treat it as a lesson learnt and prepare for any other instance like this in the future. I remember the days when we had three and four fire trucks packed in the yard at fire station. What is happening. Hello we are in 2020. OK

    • Frank N Stein
      May 13, 2020

      We dont need equipment, we have elections to win, we have artists to pay big money.

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