JCA Local Government Minister urges greater supervision of children after two die in Clarendon house fire

KINGSTON, Jamaica — Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Desmond McKenzie, is expressing sadness following the tragic deaths of siblings Abigail and Kayla Thompson, who perished in a fire at their home at Hayles Field, Race Course in Clarendon Thursday morning.

In a release, McKenzie described the deadly fire as “a great tragedy” and appealed to Jamaicans to avoid leaving children unattended.

“The information is that the children’s mother left them in the house to do something nearby and on her return, the structure was ablaze. The Jamaica Fire Brigade responded quickly but arrived to find a scene of devastation,” he said.

“Both parents have been hospitalised arising out of the trauma of losing their young ones in this terrible way. Abigail was just three years old and Kayla, four. I want to express my heartfelt condolences to all their relatives, friends and the community of Hayles Field.”

READ: Infants ages 3, 4, killed in Clarendon fire

“They, most regrettably, are also the first two fire-related deaths of 2022. While the Fire Brigade and the police are still investigating the incident, I must once again, appeal to and urge my fellow citizens to do everything possible to avoid leaving children by themselves,” Mckenzie added.

“There have simply been too many occasions over the years where children have perished in fires that occurred in the house. The Fire Brigade, through the Fire and Life Safety Programme, continues to visit communities island-wide as part of the public education effort about fire prevention, but it requires individuals to truly accept the message, and adopt the practices that will save lives,” he said. 

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