A young firefighter died tragically in St Ann on Wednesday afternoon after being hit by a vehicle that was used to overtake a line of traffic, and ended up crashing into a fire truck on the side of the road where the fireman was packing items after a team had responded to an emergency.
The crash occurred along the Ocho Rios Main Road in the vicinity of Reynolds Pier at about 2:40 pm.
In responding to the development, Local Government and Rural Development Minister, Desmond McKenzie, expressed sadness at the tragic death of Firefighter Larenzo Douse.
McKenzie also gave details of the incident.
“The crew had just finished a fire-fighting operation in the area. In fact, the firemen had just finished their shift and were replacing the equipment in the back of the truck. At that moment, Firefighter Douse was alone at the back, putting a pump into the fire truck, when the car slammed into the fire truck, crushing him. He was taken to hospital, where he was pronounced dead,” outlined McKenzie.
File photo of a group of local firefighters responding to an emergency.
“Larenzo Douse was a very young firefighter with his whole life ahead of him. He joined the Jamaica Fire Brigade at the tender age of 19, and served for six years, and just celebrated his 25th birthday on November 13,” added the minister.
“The grief at his terrible demise is being felt beyond the Ocho Rios Fire Station where he was stationed, and goes all the way into the St Catherine Division, where young Larenzo’s father is a serving assistant superintendent.
“This is yet another instance of the tragedy, grief, pain and bitterness that is caused by personal irresponsibility, in this case by a motorist who overtook a line of traffic, rather than trying to reach a chosen destination by obeying the rules of the road,” stated McKenzie.
“I appeal to all users of our roads to make your personal contribution to national road safety by simply obeying the rules of the road.
“I have no words to demonstate how I feel about this incident. I know that the commissioner of the Fire Brigade and a host of personnel are personally extending themselves to offer support. I can only say that I deeply grieve this destruction of a young life, and I hope that in the coming days, when the question ‘why?’ will be asked again and again, that the immediate family and friends of Firefighter Larenzo Douse will eventually experience some level of healing. May he rest in peace and light eternal shine on him,” concluded McKenzie.