Several left stranded as Cummings Lodge apartment building destroyed by fire
“All of us had one option; just go inside in one chance and just grab whatever you have. I try to get the passport of my and my friend and just that, that what I could have done, the rest, nothing is not possible, we have no clothes, no place to stay, nothing nothing. Right now, I don’t ever have shirt, I borrow this shirt just now”- Indian National, Shaer Patel who was renting an apartment at the Building located at Third Street, Cummings Lodge, East Coast Demerara (E.C.D).
In a fire that engulfed the building at approximately 20:30 hours and lasted for more than one hour, the apartment building which housed Indian and Cuban Nationals along with several students of the Cyril Potter College of Education (CPCE) and the University of Guyana (U.G) was completely destroyed on Friday evening.
Patel told media personnel that the fire started in the lower flat of the building and spread quickly to other parts, leaving occupants unable to save anything other than their lives.
“Smoke started coming in all apartment and as soon as it started, everybody was cautioned ‘Fire! Fire!’ so we all ran outside right. When we came downstairs, we actually identified that this bottom flat from where the smoke was coming. So one of our person staying there, he try to break the windows look inside what was happening and they try to like take off the bar but soon they realized that the fire had already taken a big shape and they couldn’t help. Because you see how this apartments are built, it’s just a wooden framework, that’s it” the Indian National.
Patel is in Guyana studying Medicine.
Contemplating his next move as a foreigner with no job or relatives in Guyana, he said “we expect the Government to help us, to set up a little little, let’s say a home or some little help…we’re just students came over here and all of our stuff are burnt up, basic necessities taken from you.”
He noted that there were approximately three Indian Nationals including himself, one Cuban girl and another Cuban family and several other Guyanese residing in the building which consisted of approximately 20 apartments.