Deadly Drysdale fire: Survivors saw wires sparking

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Persons who survived the Drysdale Street, Charlestown fire that killed a father and his two children on Friday, believe that it may have been caused by an air conditioning unit that was reportedly sparking before the tragedy.

“Maybe electrical…But I am not sure…I heard something about an AC unit… I an electrician but I can’t pronounce on that,” an uncle of the children, Ryan Greenidge told the News Room on Friday morning.

The house damaged by the fire

Rachel (only name given), occupied the upper flat of the house and she too believes the fire was electrical in origin.

“I think it’s electrical problem…The neighbour downstairs got a footage of some wire sparking and the AC thing (cut) off,” she said.

Fire Chief (ag) Gregory Wickham told the News Room that investigators are still working to determine the cause of the fire.

Michael Richards and his two children, six-year-old Somaya Richards and four-year-old Supreme Richards lost their lives in the fire which started around 06:45 hrs.

Ryan Greenidge

They were reportedly trapped in the lower flat of Lot 8 Drysdale Street, Charlestown house. It is believed that Richards perished as he was trying to make his way out of the house since his body was found at the entrance of the door.

The children’s bodies were recovered in the bedroom. Their uncle said he was traversing the area when he noticed the fire.

“…I left the car, tek a look and when I come, the house is on fire. The firemen didn’t get a chance to reach into the house as yet. The door them couldn’t break down. I don’t know what prevent them from getting into the building.

“Probably a wood fall down on the father cause he was right in front. The children was in the room. Very burnt. Like burn, burn,” Greenidge said.

The children lived with their mother and father, but according to Greenidge, the mother (his sister), was not at home at the time; she had left earlier in the morning to run an errand.

Meanwhile, Rachel related that she was preparing for work when she was alerted to the fire.

“By time we run out. The whole house had smoke,” she said.

According to Rachel, the fire spread quickly.

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