COP: Residents likely causing Abaco fires

Commissioner of Police Anthony Ferguson yesterday suggested that Abaco residents may be inadvertently responsible for a series of fires in what remains of shantytowns on the island.

“In relation to the fires that you’ve seen, we believe that there are persons who are going into The Mudd area and may be looking for things and hence starting fires,” Ferguson told reporters at Government House.

“We have teams of fire branch officers down there in Abaco along with volunteer firefighters. And so, there are no major, major issues to fires. Yesterday, I think it was, a fire was on the other side and the wind just blow it on the other side in The Mudd but they were able to extinguish the fire.

“So, we’ll continue to be on the ground and monitor it and, hopefully, pretty soon that should go away.”

The commissioner said the fires should not interfere with recovery efforts in The Mudd and Pigeon Peas.

“We are doing our work down there and we will continue to do that,” he said.

“If a fire is being spread, if you try to out it and it doesn’t out, you will find that it will burn its way out. But, in most cases, the fires were brought under control.”

Ferguson expressed confidence that the Royal Bahamas Police Force has “the resources in place to be able to deal with that”.

Chief Superintendent Walter Evans, who heads the Fire Services unit, said yesterday there have been “several fires over the last couple of days” on Abaco, adding that there were “a couple” fires on the island on Sunday.

However, Evans was unable to provide the location of the fires.

On Wednesday, a fire broke out in the Pigeon Peas shantytown.

The Pigeon Peas shantytown suffered extensive damage in Hurricane Dorian.

The government issued contracts for the cleanup of the debris in the shantytowns two weeks ago.

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Jasper Ward

Jasper Ward started at The Nassau Guardian in September 2018. Ward covers a wide range of national and social issues. Education: Goldsmiths, University of London, MA in Race, Media and Social Justice

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