Fire destroys half a small Honduran island
At least 90 houses in the small Honduran island of Guanaja, a most coveted beach resort in the Caribbean Sea, have been brought down to its ashes Saturday when a fire broke out, it was reported.
Some 2,500 people have been affected by a fire which started at around 3am Saturday, according to press reports.
The island does not have a Fire Department, so help had to be sent from nearby Roatán and also from the country’s capital Tegucigalpa.
Guanaja Deputy Mayor Mireya Guillén had at first cried that the fire “has already affected half of the key, we cannot stop it, it is uncontrollable.
“Right now we need help from everything: food, clothes, water and oxygen tanks. People have already been evacuated to the mainland of the island,” she added.
The key is Guanaja’s main area where a health center and the City Council are located. Authorities also feared gas stations in the area would make matters worse.
The crisis was under control around noon, after military helicopters were summoned to drop bags of water on the blazing island. The fire is 100% controlled,” said the head of the government’s Permanent Intervention Commission (COPECO), Max Gonzales.
Most of Guanaja’s 6,000 inhabitants make their living from from tourism.
Aided by police, people raced to save beds, furniture and other belongings as the blaze approached, forcing the evacuation of at least some 400 people. In addition to the 90 houses destroyed, around 120 others were damaged, which affected around 2,500 people directly and some of them were even injured.
The fire started for unknown reasons in the wee hours of Saturday in seaside homes and spread quickly.
Guanaja is in the Caribbean Sea. It measures 19 square kilometers and is one of the three Bay Islands of Honduras. The others are Roatan and Utila.