Baby dies in fire
A one-year-old baby boy is dead in Grand Bahama following an early morning house fire yesterday in the Sunset Sub-division community, which is located in an area commonly known as’The Back-of-Town’.
The boy has been identified by police as Rajish Cox. Police suspect that he perished in the fire.
Around 8:10 a.m. police control room received a call notifying it of the fire, said police press liaison officer Assistant Superintendent Loretta Mackey.
“Two fire trucks responded and on their arrival they met heavy smoke emanating from the washroom of a house on the front east side,”she said.
After extinguishing the fire, firefighters discovered Cox’s burnt body near the door of the washroom in the gray eight-room home.
Cox’s mother, who was also in the house at the time of the fire, was taken by ambulance to the Rand Memorial Hospital where she was treated and discharged.
Mackey said that while firefighters and a team of officers from the Central Detective Unit(CDU)are investigating the cause of the fire, it appears it originated in the washroom, as fire damage was confined to that area.
The rest of the house, she added, suffered only heat and smoke damage.
“There was a water heater, a freezer and a washer and dryer that were on,”Mackey said.”There was also a small portable generator in the same room within close proximity.”
In addition to Cox, there were three other people in the house at the time of the blaze.
Residents attempting to extinguish the fire took down the washroom door, Mackey explained.
Anne Smith, an eyewitness, said she ran over to the house when she heard the baby’s mother screaming.
“I asked her what happened and she said the baby is in the house,”she said.
Recounting the incident, Smith said she asked what happened, but the mother continued to say that the baby was in the house.
Several neighbors ran to the house and attempted to put out the fire, according to Smith. They had it under control by the time firefighters arrived, she said.
Ted Russell, another neighbor, said he heard a lot of screaming and saw smoke coming from the house across the road when he looked out of his window.
“I came outside and met a couple of the other neighbors. And all of us ran over and started to get some buckets with water,”Russell said.”When we heard there was a fire, we tried to see how best we could put out the fire and stop the house from burning.”
He added that it took them about 20 minutes to get the flames under control.
While the cause of the fire is still unclear, Floyd Bastian, assistant superintendent of police and chief fire officer, said homeowners should be careful when placing generators and other equipment inside their homes.
“In the home they had a washer and dryer that were being used at the time. Nearby was also a portable gasoline generator and we know that there is the potential in those generators to cause fires,”he said.
“We are saying to the public, ensure that you keep these equipment separate from where you live and in a well ventilated area to ensure that fumes and other combustible vapors do not accumulate and cause a fire.”
FATAL FIRE–The body of Rajish Cox, 1, is removed from the scene of a house fire yesterday at Sunset Subdivision.