Jail storehouse goes up in flames

| 27/09/2017 | 6 Comments
Cayman News Service

The inside of the HMP Northward storehouse after the fire

(CNS): The wooden property at HMP Northward where supplies and equipment are held for the prison went up in flames in the early hours of Wednesday morning after the building’s roof was hit by lightning. The small wooden building was struck during the overnight thunder-storm at around 1:30am. By the time the Cayman Islands Fire Service arrived, the property was fully ablaze, officials said. It took firefighters until around 4:00am to put out the fire, which completely destroyed the building and the supplies inside.

Prison Director Neil Lavis said the building stored dried goods, prisoner hygiene supplies, uniforms and equipment, all of which has been lost. The building also houses the prison computer cables, and as a result of its destruction the prison’s communication systems are currently down.

“Fortunately, the lightning strike took place outside the main prison walls, so I am extremely relieved that no staff members or prisoners were injured during the incident,” he said. “I am really impressed by the response from the staff on duty at the time, as well as those who responded to the emergency calls. The quick response of the fire service prevented what could have been a much bigger disaster.”

Cayman News Service

Firefighters battle the blaze inside the HMP Northward storehouse

Chief Fire Officer David Hails said that when his team arrived, the building was fully engulfed in flames and had sustained major damage from the lighting strike. He added that the fire officers had worked through the night to successfully put out the blaze, which was fully extinguished by around 4:00am.

Technical staff are now working on restoring connectivity to the prison as soon as possible. In the meantime the authorities apologised for the inconvenience and asked for the public’s patience as they restore access.


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Category: Local News

Comments (6)

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  1. Cayman News says:

    The comment that appeared in regards to this article purporting to be written by Lance Jefferson was not written by him and has been removed. Cayman News Service apologises for any inconvenience or embarrassment this may have caused Mr Jefferson.

  2. Leroy B. Whorms Sr says:

    I live next door to the Prison and my Floor scales was also hit by lightning at the same time.

  3. Anonymous says:

    The Lightning protection code anyone?
    Structures containing elements vital to the operational mission must be protected from lightning. Buildings constructed of nonconductive materials such as wood, concrete blocks, or synthetic materials are the most susceptible to destructive damage. A complete auxiliary protection system might be required to prevent lightning damage to buildings utilizing this type of construction. If a strike to the facility poses a threat to human life, either to the occupants of the structure or to those persons whose safety is dependent upon reliable performance of the equipment and people inside the structure, comprehensive lightning protection should be definitely provided even in areas of low thunderstorm activity.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Another example of absence of building codes. Shouldn’t be lightings rods mandatory on certain “flammable” buildings?
    Pray that lightning won’t strike the Dump.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Lightning rod anyone? Seriously, you keep your computer cabls in a woodn shed?

  6. Edgar A. Poe says:

    How uninformed can you be ???? Small shack fire ? Do you have any clue as to what is stored there ? As I am sure most storage sheds have numerous combustible items in them. You would be surprised at how well the CIFS here is trained and until you tackle a fire I would not be so quick to judge their capability.


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