picking up the pieces: Henry Abraham, left, manager of D Korner Grill in Crown Point, Tobago, is assisted in cleaning up, following the fire which destroyed the food establishment yesterday morning. —Photo: ELIZABETH WILLIAMS

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Quick action by staff puts out NP blaze

Crown Point restaurant goes up in flames, but...

By Elizabeth Williams Tobago Bureau

A major disaster was averted yesterday when fire erupted at the Crown Point National Petroleum (NP) station behind ANR Robinson International Airport.

It was one of two fires in Crown Point, Tobago, which caused more than $2 million in damage, and Fire Service officials are investigating the circumstances surrounding both incidents.

According to Fire Service reports, around 10 a.m., a contractor was hired to do repairs to one of the main tanks at the NP station when sparks from welding equipment he was using ignited waste product contained in a bond wall.

Quick work by NP personnel and the contractor extinguished the flames. Assistance also came from officers of the Crown Point Fire Station.

Fire Officer Junior Brebnor is continuing investigations.

Earlier yesterday, at around 5.30 a.m., fire destroyed D Korner Grill.

Manager of the establishment Henry Abraham said everything seemed fine when he opened for breakfast customers. Abraham said he was just metres away from his business when smoke was observed coming from the Grill.

"I left the premises for about 15 minutes, 12-15 minutes, and on my return, I see smoke coming through the door," he said.

Abraham said an employee told him of an explosion in a panel box before the food outlet was engulfed in flames.

Tenders from the Crown Point Fire Station responded, but nothing was saved.

"The guy next door tell me it get an explosion from the meter...I then see a blaze of fire, so we just could not do anything again," Abraham said.

Food establishments nearby remained untouched as the fire was contained. No one was injured.

Abraham, along with friends and fellow employees, assisted in clean-up operations.

Despite his loss, Abraham is picking up the pieces and intends to reopen on the same spot soon.

"Within a month to six weeks, we will reopen. At the present time, we trying to clean up and see how we could have the site ready, maybe for the next stage," he said.

Fire Service officers said initial investigations indicate the fire was caused by an ignition source which caused overheating.

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