Chris, there is a fire at the house!”
Words no man or woman wants to hear from their spouse or significant other. On July 2, there was a minor fire at my wife’s salon. No fire is minor, but this was minor compared with what might have happened.
A series of unfortunate events led to a flash fire that resulted in injuries to a member of staff and soot damage to the bathroom and hallway walls of the salon. Fortunately, other staff and clients had the presence of mind to use the two fire extinguishers to put out the flames.
Without their quick action, the results undoubtedly would have been completely different.
Perhaps, by the will of God, one of the persons present at the time is actually a nurse at King Edward VII Memorial Hospital who was able to render first aid to the one member of staff who needed it.
Thankfully, that staff member was treated and released the same day. We would like to thank the Bermuda Fire and Rescue Service and the Emergency Medical Services for their quick response in coming to the salon and helping to assist persons with medical evaluation and smoke extraction.
In particular, Lieutenant Jay Albert Donawa, of BFRS, and EMT Darius Richardson, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts.
Let me say that both of these gentlemen and their teams were extremely empathetic and professional every step of the way. The BFRS explained to us what went wrong, what went right and offered safety courses for the staff.
For a very quick minute, I forgot that it was actually Cup Match season and hugged Lieutenant Donawa, who is a staunch Somerset Cricket Club supporter.
Luckily for us, the structural damage was minimal and we were able to fix the salon the same day and are now back up and running.
Without a doubt, the biggest lesson of all out of this is the amount of concern shown by our neighbours and clients, who have called or come by to check on us and/or offered to help with the cleaning that day.
For eight years, my wife and her staff have invested into building not just clients but relationships with those who faithfully support with their patronage.
Last week was a testimony to those relationships. It truly shows the spirit of Bermudians when these things happen.
In closing, it is very important that every household and business have working fire extinguishers and, most importantly, that occupants of all ages know how to operate them efficiently.
It truly is a matter of life or death.
• Christopher Famous is a government backbencher and the MP for Devonshire East (Constituency 11). You can reach him at WhatsApp on 599-0901 or e-mail at email@example.com