The Saint Lucia Fire Service (SLFS) has said that a poor access road and the absence of a fire hydrant nearby, hampered its response to a fire at Sunbilt Wednesday evening.
Assistant Divisional Officer, David Antoine, told St Lucia Times that firefighters encountered ‘major problems’ in fighting the blaze which left two families homeless.
“The access road to the fire was in a deplorable condition such that fire appliances were not able to be stationed sufficiently close to the scene,” Antoine explained.
He said responders also had to work with a limited supply of water because there was no hydrant in close proximity.
Antoine asserted that the incident could have become another Rose Hill fire.
It was a reference to the New Year’s day blaze that destroyed seven houses in that densely populated Castries community.
The senior firefighter expressed the view that it was incumbent on developers to ensure that adequate infrastructure is in place as mandated by law.
“Developers have to begin to take that seriously because it means if you have not done that before handing over a parcel of land, then when will you see that happening?”
Antoine revealed that about 5:50 pm Wednesday the fire service received a report of the fire at Sunbilt.
He said on arrival, firefighters found that the two-storey structure was fully engulfed.
“After much effort, fire officers were able to control and subsequently extinguish the fire,” Antoine told St Lucia Times.
Three adults and five children who occupied the building lost everything in the fire.
The owner of the property is reported to be living in the United States.