Hairdresser injured in salon blaze
A hairdresser suffered minor burns to her wrists yesterday after a fire broke out at her salon.
The blaze happened in a bathroom as the woman staff member refilled a spray bottle with flammable liquid near a lit candle.
Another employee at the salon, who asked not to be named, said that she was braiding a young girl’s hair when she heard a scream from the bathroom.
She added that she turned around and saw that the sink and floor of the bathroom were on fire.
The employee explained: “When I saw it, I thought ‘is this really happening?’. It was quite a frightening experience.”
The incident happened at the Maxilous Salon on Friswells Road, Pembroke, at about 9am.
The injured hairdresser was given first aid at the scene by an off-duty nurse before she was taken to the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital.
She was treated and released from hospital in the afternoon.
The injured woman’s colleague said that she took the child through the back door of the salon as soon as she saw the fire and returned to help tackle the flames.
The nurse, who also asked not to be identified, said that she was helping the hairdresser with the girl when the fire broke out.
She said: “I was in the corner, so I didn’t really realise what was happening until everybody started screaming.
“As soon as I saw it, I was out, checking for stuff to catch water to throw on it.”
The woman, who works at KEMH, added that everyone in the building worked together to put the fire out.
The blaze was extinguished before firefighters arrived.
The nurse said: “It started so fast but we reacted quickly. We tried to extinguish the flames so it wouldn’t spread beyond where it was.”
She added: “The staff member who started the fire complained about her arm when the fire was out.
“I assessed it and it didn’t look like it needed immediate help or anything like that, so we just managed to keep the area cool with some cold water, until the ambulance came.”
She added that she was not worried about a danger to clients because of the quick work by the staff and her experience of emergency situations.
The nurse said: “I don’t usually panic, I just get stuff done. That’s just how I am.”
The uninjured hairdresser said it was the first emergency at the salon in the four years she had worked there.
Firefighters cleared the building of smoke and checked the four adults and the child in the building when the fire broke out for breathing problems caused by smoke, but none required treatment.
Maxine Simms-Famous, the salon’s owner, said spray bottles were normally refilled elsewhere in the building to prevent the risk of accidents. She added: “She usually did not handle the chemicals, so this was not something she was familiar with.”
Ms Simms-Famous said the injured hairdresser was “very professional and highly trained”.
She added: “She has worked here for years and she’s been in the industry for well over 15 years.”
Ms Simms-Famous, who has owned the business for eight years, said all her employees were trained to work with chemicals as part of their education.
She added that the salon had emergency equipment for fires, including a smoke detector, fire extinguishers and fire exit signs.
Ms Simms-Famous said she planned to hold a Bermuda Fire and Rescue Service fire safety workshop in the near future to remind staff on how to tackle emergencies.
Ms Simms-Famous said that the fire had left scorch marks on the walls and ceiling around the bathroom sink.
She added that the injured employee had spent the rest of the day at home to recover.
Ms Simms-Famous also thanked people from the area around the salon for their help with repairs and good wishes.
She said: “Most of our clients are from within the surrounding area and they’ve been very supportive.”
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