A MASSIVE fire at Jennie Street yesterday destroyed six structures and left four partially damaged leaving families in total devastation.
Helpless to the violent flames that moved from one structure to the next within minutes, Thomas Daxon was among the people who looked on.
When he first arrived at the scene his house was intact, however as minutes turned into an hour the fire spread to his uninsured home and engulfed it.
The 63-year-old said he also lost his boat, which he relies on to help care for his family.
“It’s devastating. It’s terrible,” the 63-year-old said of the situation. “I can’t think because my mind blank. I don’t know what to think.
“My boat I was making money off is gone and that’s it. I can’t think.”
He said he was not at home when the fire started and only found out through a phone call.
“My wife and my grandson was the only the two people in the house. I was on the job. They call me and tell me they called the fire engine. When they reach here the engine wasn’t even here as yet.”
A 99-year-old woman was also taken to the hospital by ambulance to be treated for smoke inhalation.
According to police, the cause of the fire, is not yet known.
Police said: “Preliminary facts are that shortly before 3pm, the Fire Department received reports of a structural fire on Jennie Street. Moments later, the first unit arrived at the scene where they found several structures engulfed in flames. The officers began to extinguish the fire. Several minutes later additional units arrived at the scene and assisted with the extinguishing of the fire.
“Initial assessments reveal that six structures were completely destroyed and four were partially damaged.”
When The Tribune arrived on the scene, the neighbourhood was at a standstill as black billowing smoke hovered over the community and the engulfed homes.
The large cloud of smoke could be seen from Tonique Williams-Darling Highway and as far east as Village Road.
The flames were unruly, and police were forced to block off certain roads near the blaze.
Officers also manned the perimeter of the fire to prevent bystanders from getting near and possibly suffering smoke inhalation.
If the presence of police was not a sufficient deterrent, the fire’s intensity was motivation enough for the crowds to run from the scene.
But this did not stop concerned residents from trying to approach the roadblocks as they feared the fire would move to other neighbouring houses, including their own.