Fire outbreak at Jamestown:  500 structures burnt, hundreds rendered homeless

Over 500 wood­en structures were destroyed in a fire out­break at a slum at Jamestown in Accra on Tuesday and hundreds of people rendered homeless as a result.

Items destroyed included per­sonal effects, fridges and fish.

No casualty was recorded.

When Ghanaian Times visited the scene after the fire, it saw some victims counting their losses with

 others salvaging belongings from the debris.

It was a field day for scrap deal­ers as they were collecting things they found suitable.

Eyewitnesses who spoke to the Ghanaian Times raised the suspicion that the outbreak was as a result of a fire that was not attended to.

 Assistant Divisional Officer Grade One (ADOI) Alex King Nartey of the Public Relations Department of Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS) Headquarters, in an interview with the Ghanaian Times yesterday, said his office re­ceived a distress call and proceeded to the scene.

He said fire tenders were dispatched from the Accra Region, Makola, Ministries and GNFS headquarters to the scene.

ADOI Nartey stated that it took firefighters three hours to bring the fire under control, con­fine and distinguish it within five hours.

He said the affected place was used for commercial and residential purposes by the occupants.

He mentioned challenges, in­cluding storage of petroleum prod­ucts and keeping of gas cylinders at the place, which caused explosions.

ADOI Nartey said there was no water in the hydrants around the scene and so firefighters had to

 travel all the way to Kaneshie in Accra to replenish the tenders.

“Accessibility to the site of fire was difficult as structures had been built too close to each other,” ADOI Nartey.

He urged the public to abide by the rules and regulations about fire safety to ensure that lives and properties were saved.

“Most of the fire outbreaks were avoidable if best practices on fire safety were adhered to,” he added.

ADOI Nartey said the cause of the fire was currently under investigations.

He assured the public of the continuous determination of the GNFS to ensure that fire outbreaks in the country were reduced.

ADOI Nartey urged the public to strengthen its partner­ship with the service to assist in reducing fire outbreaks in the country.


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