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March 28, 2014
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Market blaze - 63 shops destroyed in fire
Horace Fisher, STAR Witer


Kacia Williams, who operated a dressmaking business in the May Pen Market, points to what is left of her sewing machine after yesterday's fire. - Horace Fisher

Fire of unknown origin destroyed some 63 shops in the May Pen market yesterday and left behind millions of dollars in damage and score of uncertain shop owners pondering their next move.

The fire, which reportedly started after 2 a.m., razed through the commercial section of the market, destroying a large amount of dressmaking, cosmetology, jewel-making and juice-making machinery along with stoves, fridges, restaurant and other commercial equipment in its wake.

When THE WEEKEND STAR visited the market this morning, scores of dispossessed fire victim were seen picking through the rubble after the firefighters had finished putting out the blaze.

"A after 2 mi inna mi bed this morning when we get a call say the market on fire and when me reach out here, a this me see, everything gone," Keisha Scott, who operated a dressmaking business in the market said. "I lost everything, my machines, my scissors, materials, money, everything that you know a dressmaker would have. I lost everything and I don't know where I am going to start from."

Kacia Williams a part-time student, who also operated a dressmaking shop in the market along with her mother, said that she, too, lost all of her machinery and other dressmaking tools, fabric and other items she sells.

"My two industrial and three domestic sewing machines gone, fabric gone, soap powder gone. A just da little saving pan me save with the couple silver," the part-time student and dressmaker said sadly, as she held up a fire-rusted, metal saving box.

The Clarendon Parish Council, the fire brigade and the police are evaluating the damage and the probable cause of the blaze.

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