Sixteen homeless after fire

Salanieta Namena with her four year old daughter Elizabeth in front of their three bedroom home that was destroyed by a fire in Kashmir, Lautoka. Picture: REPEKA NASIKO

Sixteen people are homeless after their homes were completely destroyed by a fire in Kashmir, Lautoka, yesterday.

The villagers from Bumaka in Yasawa were living in two three-bedroom houses that were destroyed by the blaze around midday.

Mother-of-one Salanieta Namena was at home in one of the houses when her neighbour alerted her of the blaze.

“By the time they called out to us, the fire had already spread to our house,” said Ms Namena.

“I was with my daughter and two uncles when the fire broke out.

“I tried to put out the fire with a bucket of water, but it was too strong.

“I saw electrical wires exploding, and that was when I knew we had to get out.”

She said her four-year-old daughter had made it safely outside with her two uncles.

“I went to help my neighbours, who had an elderly woman who couldn’t walk.

“She made it out safely and we are very lucky that no one was hurt.”

Neighbour Tomasi Uludai, whose relatives were at his home, said they lost everything.

“The only thing we have left is the clothes that we are wearing right now,” said Mr Uludai.

“We have five students living with us.

“I really don’t know how we will be able to recover from this.”

Investigations by the National Fire Authority have begun.

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