The origin of the fire, which began sometime after 7:00 PM, was not immediately known.
When Demerara Waves Online News (www.demwaves.com) arrived at the scene, part of the building was engulfed, while the compound housing it was already ablaze due to chemicals being on the ground. As numerous persons from the surrounding areas crowded the Eccles Industrial Area in which the bond is located, huge balls of fire occasionally tore through the air and loud explosions were heard as far as neighbouring Nandy Park.
The entire bond was soon totally engulfed. The managers of Comfort Sleep, which is situated next door to the bond, arrived and were soon in fearful tears, hoping for the fire not to catch their building.
Fire fighters arrived on the scene a few minutes after the blaze began. Initially they appeared to be lost and drove around Eccles for some time trying to find an access point to the scene of the fire. Once at the scene, the fire fighters went to work on the building, but water soon ran out. As a result, more trucks arrived on scene and about four hoses were set in motion. Though their hoses were leaking badly, fire fighters managed to get the fire under control about one hour after. All that is left of the bond now is a shell.
DemWaves attempted to locate the owner of the bond, but it was soon discovered that he is out of the country.
One representative of Payless, who declined to state his name, reluctantly stated that there were “stuff” in the building at the time the fire broke out. “We saw smoke and fire and by the time we got there it was already big”. The representative mentioned that the fire began some where behind the building.
Rumours were circulating among onlookers that “only yesterday (Tuesday) the ‘owners’ cleaned out their bond”. When questioned about this, the representative denied the claim.
Another Payless representative revealed that there is another newly constructed building located nearby which is owned by the company.
According to Guyana Fire Service Cadet Officer Andrew Holder, “at this point in time, we cannot say what the cause of the fire was.” He revealed that the compound where the majority of the fire was housed a lot of chemicals, but stated that, “we do not know yet what was in the building we will find that out tomorrow (Thursday)”. Holder confirmed that fire fighters were able to contain the fire.