Monday, November 26, 2012

Fire leaves 8 homeless in Tobago

Tobago Emergency Management Agency director
 Allan Stewart looks at the remains of Taylor's gutted home at Roberts Trace,
Mount Pleasant in Tobago. –Photo: ELIZABETH WILLIAMS

A fire at Roberts Trace, Mt Pleasant, Tobago, left a family of eight homeless, with damage estimated at more than $600,000.
Fire Service officials suspect the cause of the blaze to be electrical, as initial investigations indicate the fire started in the roof of the structure, occupied by the Taylor family.
The four-bedroom concrete structure occupied by eight people was engulfed in flames shortly before 4 p.m. on Saturday.

The occupants included parents– 64-year-old Lewis Taylor and 61-year-old Jacqueline Taylor, Vernell Taylor, 18, who attends Mason Hall Secondary School, Antonio James, 11, who attends Black Rock Government, Atika Taylor, 9, who attends St Patrick Anglican School and three-month-old Hernander Jarvis.

The displaced family is being accommodated by relatives and friends. According to the Tobago Emergency Maqnagement Agency (TEMA) director Allan Stewart, TEMA has been assisting the family with relief items.
"Sheets, mattresses, lighting materials, water and other items have been handed over to the family. A preliminary damage assessment is being done to see what the needs of the family are at this time," Stewart said.

He said a damage assessment officer will visit to determine whether the entire house needs to be demolished and rebuilt.

"We are also working with the Social Development Department in going forward as all school supplies were also lost," Stewart said.

Jacqueline Taylor told the Express she was not at home at the time of the blaze, but was informed by her husband what happened.

"My husband was outside the home when the blaze started in the ceiling of our home. The blaze was very hard to contain despite assistance from neighbours. No one was in the house at the time of the blaze. We are alive, God has kept us and I am standing strong. My children and grandchildren lost everything–laptops, school materials, and personal possessions," Taylor said.

The family was visited by THA Chief Secretary Orville London and his team and also Minister in the Ministry of the People and Social Development Vernela Alleyne-Toppin and her team. Anyone wishing to help the family can call 308-0040 or 316-2283.

reproduced unedited from express Trinidad

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