CURNELL Rowe Jr stared in stunned silence as firefighters doused flames which yesterday engulfed his father's two-bedroom house on Henley Road in Waterhouse, St Andrew.
Half-an-hour after he fled the burning premises, the five-year-old was obviously traumatised, swallowing hard repeatedly as he watched the blaze from the safety of his aunt's arms.
According to his aunt, Tamara Samuels, Curnell was the only one at home when the fire started about 1:40 pm. Thankfully, she said, he was awake and was able to escape. Otherwise, she would have lost him to the flames, she said.
"Two other children (siblings) live there with him, but they were not at home when the fire started. Is when him see the fire him run out," she said, as fire fighters ran to and from the premises, fire hoses and other equipment in hand.
District officer from the Newport East Fire Station, Ronald Lawrence, said the house was completely gutted when his team arrived on the scene. He said that two motorcycles — used by the child's father in his job as a bearer — were completely razed, adding to an estimated $3-million worth of damage.
The cause of the fire remains unknown, he said. No one was injured in the blaze, allaying concerns raised by two policemen who turned up on the scene.
"One unit responded to the fire, and now we just cooling down," said Lawrence, adding that the blaze was brought under control without much effort.
Yesterday, Samuels expressed concern for her older brother whom she said left the scene after seeing his house on fire.
"I don't know what he (brother) is going to do now. He is a messenger and we did not get to save even one suit of clothes. So that is really sad," she said.