Man, mum and ten­ants home­less af­ter fire

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Fif­teen years of mem­o­ries went up in flames as man and his wid­owed mother watched their three bed­room home burn down on Sun­day. Their cor­ru­gated iron and tim­ber struc­tured build­ing also had three flats. This has also forced four ten­ants to be­come home­less in Olosara, Si­ga­toka. Mo­hammed Sad­diq and his mum Nasiran were hav­ing an evening con­ver­sa­tion when they no­ticed that fire started from one of the flats at around 8.30pm. He said: “We moved to his house in 2001 when my father bought it and I re­mem­bered my dad well by this home of ours. Since then we ex­tended the house to flats. We did not ex­pect this to be so painful to swal­low.” Mr Sad­diq, who earns a liv­ing by land­scap­ing a neigh­bour’s com­pound, said they only man­aged to save the clothes they were wear­ing. “The fire was too fast and the first thing we took no­tice of was our lives and we watched the flame tak­ing shape.”

He said the to­tal losses was esti- mated to be over $80,000. Po­lice and the Na­tional Fire Au­thor­ity (NFA), had as­sessed the dam­age, but the cause of the fire has not been de­ter­mined yet. The in­ves­ti­ga­tion is still on­go­ing.

Chief Fire of­fi­cer Qion­i­lau Mo­ceitai said NFA Si­ga­toka re­ceived the emer­gency call at 8.30pm and im­me­di­ately re­sponded. “The fire team saw the house en­gulfed in flames and ex­tin­guished the fire and stopped it from spread­ing to the nearby houses,” he said. Mr Mo­ceitai is re­mind­ing home own­ers on the im­por­tance of fire safety at home. “It is very im­por­tant for home own­ers to be mind­ful of fire safety since fire ig­ni­tion sources are used at home,” he said.

“Fire ig­ni­tion sources like can­dles, prayer diyas, mos­quito coils, elec­tri­cal ap­pli­ances, etc can cause a fire eas­ily and we can avoid such fires, if ap­pro­pri­ate fire safety mea­sures are taken at home.” Edited by Jonathan Bryce

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