2 Venezuelan women die in Alberttown fire

Two Venezuelan women tragically lost their lives on Thursday morning in a fire that ravaged an apartment complex at Lot 136 Fifth Street, Alberttown, Georgetown.
Based on reports, the women were trapped in the apartment and were screaming for help, but firefighters were unable to gain entry owing to the intensity of the blaze.

Dead: Maria Alejandra Patiño Benjamin & Lina Maria Texidor Alonso

Dead are 25-year-old Lina Maria Texidor Alonso and 44-year-old Maria Alejandra Patiño Benjamin.
A third person who was also trapped in the building managed to escape without injuries.
When Guyana Times arrived on the scene, the flames had already been extinguished.
However, Fire Chief Kalamadeen Edoo told reporters that the Guyana Fire Service (GFS) was informed of the fire around 08:46h and responded with three units – one from Alberttown Fire Station and two from the Central Fire Station.
An ambulance was also dispatched.
The Fire Chief said that firefighters struggled to gain entry to the building to control the blaze, since the complex was fully barred with metal grilles.
“On arrival, it was observed that the first floor of the two-storey building was engulfed. Immediately, firefighting mode was put into operation where it was difficult for firefighters to get access into the building because the entire building was grilled.
“We had to break the door, when we broke that door, there were two doors: the grille door and the wood door…as the firefighters enter the building, that is where they discovered one of the bodies that was lying on the bed, and the other one was at the back of the building,” the Fire Chief explained.
At the scene, neighbours indicated that they heard the women screaming for help. They also criticised the Fire Service for not being better equipped or prepared to gain entry into the building to rescue the women.
This newspaper understands that several foreign nationals were living at the apartment complex. The Fire Service has since said that the top floor of the building was severely damaged while the ground floor suffered water damage leaving a total of 13 persons homeless. The cause of the fire is not known. Investigations are ongoing. (G9)