A Glanvilles resident and a family from Texas escaped unharmed after a dwelling and a yacht were destroyed in two separate fires on Monday.
Sharon Roberts lost her two-bedroom home on Monday afternoon when it went up in flames while she was away from the premises.
Fire Chief Elvis Weaver told Observer that when personnel from All Saints Fire Station responded to the blaze at around 2pm, the 24 x 24 house was fully engulfed and could not be saved.
Weaver said that the cause of the fire is yet to be determined.
Meanwhile, a Texan family’s visit to Barbuda was cut short when a yacht they had rented was destroyed at sea during the early hours of Monday morning.
The family-of-four had been aboard the luxury vessel, said to be owned by a local charter company, when lightning reportedly struck the boat and sparked a fire.
They were able to escape unscathed on a dinghy before the yacht submerged.
Weaver said the fire department responded to the call but could not get to extinguish the blaze.
“The yacht was out on the sea. They could not get close to the fire. The fire burned off,” he said.
Michael Morris, a member of the family, recounted how the incident unfolded on state media.
“I woke up to a thunderclap and I thought, ‘well, that was really close’, so I go up on deck and I checked just to see if there was any damage to the boat and I was surprised to find everything still in place and I went back down below deck and I heard another clap.
“I heard another clap which I knew hit the boat and when I looked up through the skylight, you could see the mast and the shrouds kinda glowing like a filament in a light bulb and I thought then it was gonna be bad and, well, it was bad,” he said.
Morris indicated that the family may head back to Texas a few days before they had originally planned, noting that they have been left with only the clothes on their backs and a few items they were able to grab.