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The burnt ruins at the Indian Expo after the fire, yesterday.

Derek Achong

An auto garage in Belmont was completely destroyed yesterday when a backyard fire, started by a neighbour, quickly spread.

According to reports, around 8.30 am, fire tenders responded to the fire at Industry Lane in Belmont.

The fire officers were able to stop the blaze from spreading to other neighbouring properties but were unable to save the single-story wooden house in the garage’s compound, which was engulfed in flames.

The owner of the property was able to move some of his wreckers before they were destroyed like other vehicles, engines, and parts on the compound located close to the source of the fire. He and his relatives declined to comment when approached.

Guardian Media understands that the fire started after a neighbour set a fire to dispose of rubbish at the back of his yard, which bounds the garage.

The neighbour was seen using a garden hose to help extinguish the remnants of the fire, which remained near the property boundary when a news team from Guardian Media visited the scene.

Police sources said that investigators are considering charging the neighbour as he did not have a permit to start a fire during the ongoing dry season.

The offence carries a maximum penalty of a $1,500 fine or up to six months in prison.

Meanwhile, police and fire officers are investigating a possible arson attack on an Indian Expo in Chaguanas yesterday.

According to reports, around 2.40 am, police received a report of a fire at the expo located along Endeavour Avenue in Chaguanas.

The security officer assigned to the compound told police that there was no issue when he walked about around midnight and he only noticed smoking coming from the building around 2.20 am.

After extinguishing the fire, fire officers found a hole in the perimeter fence, which appeared freshly cut, and a track in the grass leading to the highway.

No one was injured in either of the fires.