Arson suspected in Laparkan fire – Fire Chief

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The fire at Laparkan Shipping Complex

The Guyana Fire Service (GFS) has wrapped up its investigation into the fire which destroyed a bond at the Guyana National Industrial Company Incorporated (GNIC), Lombard Street, Georgetown and it has been concluded that the inferno was an act of arson.

“We would have completed the investigation and the cause which we came up with is that the fire was maliciously set by person/persons unknown,” Fire Chief (ag) Gregory Wickham told INews.

The fire erupted just before midnight on January 16 and destroyed a two-storey wooden, concrete and steel bond which was used by Tropical Shipping Company and Laparkan Trading Company.

It was reported that Tropical Shipping Company sustained water damage and minor fire damage. Additionally, propane cylinders, a quantity of barrels containing food stuff, clothing, household appliances and other items were destroyed.

On the other hand, Laparkan Trading suffered the loss of one Bobcat machine, a quantity of office furniture, gas cylinders, crates of energy drinks, three 40 feet containers containing electrical cables and flex hoses, three electrical transformers and three 40 feet refrigeration containers. In addition, eleven vehicles were also destroyed while five were severely damaged and three others were slightly damaged.

Asked whether any suspect(s) or persons of interest have been identified, the Fire Chief explained that “any suspects will have to do with the police.”

Asked whether the police are aware of the GFS’ findings, he explained that the two organisations were conducting their operations in a “coordinated approach”.

“Police had their investigations on the ground too so it was done simultaneously,” he noted.

When prompted for information about what led to the conclusion that the fire was maliciously set, the Fire Chief said he cannot divulge any further details on the case.

Last evening, he had indicated to this publication that authorities were still in the process of reviewing CCTV footage.

Laparkan Company Manager Bodhan Nipan had recently noted that the company is doing its best to make sure that business is not impeded and that affected customers’ needs and concerns are addressed.