Fire officials have noted a ten per cent decrease in house fires for 2018 in comparison to last year, but with five fires for the month of December, acting chief fire officer Henderson Patrick is reminding homeowners to abide by safety practices during the Christmas season.
His comments came after a fire wreaked havoc in King William Street, The City, Sunday night, badly affecting two family businesses and three homes.
A wooden house was destroyed, a hair salon, apartments and the home of an elderly couple were extensively damaged by of the blaze.
“We are encouraging persons to exercise care and caution especially during this Christmas season. People will have a tendency to work long hours, they will have a tendency to stay up very long at night engaging in different types of activities to make themselves comfortable for Christmas Day . . . . We want people to exercise due care and attention when they are participating in these social activities because at the end of the day if we become complacent and something we do not plan for, can happen,” Patrick warned.
To date the fire service has responded to 2439 calls, up from last year’s 2040 calls. Seventy-eight private building fires were recorded in 2017 and 70 for this year. Patrick commended Barbadians for engaging fire prevention techniques as he revealed that over the last three years, private building fires have decreased by three per cent. But he cautioned that citizens should not become complacent because fires were often due to negligence.