Live Video & Updates: Fire In St George’s

September 2, 2017

[Updating: At around 11.50am today [Sept 2] the Bermuda Fire and Rescue Service responded to a fire at the Robertson’s Drug Store building in St. George. The building’s roof collapsed, and firefighters battled the blaze all afternoon and as of 6.00pm, they are wetting down hot spots. The BFRS said, “There are no injuries at this time. An investigation into the fire will commence once firefighters have completely extinguished the fire.”]

Short video recap showing the beginning, the roof collapsing, and the aftermath:


The Bermuda Fire and Rescue Service are currently on scene working to extinguish a fire at the Robertson’s Drug Store building in St George’s. Firefighters remain on scene battling the blaze, and we will update as able.

The BFRS arriving just after the fire started:

Update 12.48pm: We are streaming live video here on Bernews Facebook page.

Update 12.50pm: Audio statement below from Fire Service spokesperson Acting Lieutenant Russann Francis speaking at the scene a few minutes ago.

She said, “This afternoon, the Bermuda Fire and Rescue Service responded to a fire incident at the Robertson’s Drugstore building in St. George.

“On arrival, we found one air conditioner with flames, the entire second level, however, is emitting thick black smoke. We will have more details to follow.”

When asked if anyone was injured, she told Bernews, “At this moment, there has been no one listed or reported as injured. However, we are just fighting to get inside to see if there’s anyone in there.”

Update 1.06pm: The BFRS said, “The Bermuda Fire and Rescue Service responded to a structural fire at the Robertson’s Drug Store building at 24 York Street in St. George today, Saturday, September 2, 2017 at approximately 11:51am.

“We received the call via an alarm system which is monitored by Bermuda Security Group followed by multiple calls from the public stating they see black smoke and fire on the second floor.

One hour live video replay showing from around 12.45pm – 1.45pm

Fire Service spokesperson Acting Lieutenant Russann Francis said, “On arrival we found flame emitting from an Airconditioner unit and thick black smoke erupting from multiple windows and eaves surrounding the upper level of the building.

“We encourage members of the public to use caution on York Street and the surrounding area of the drug store as crews are diligently working to fully extinguish the fire.

“There are no injuries at this time. An investigation into the fire will commence once firefighters have completely extinguished the fire.”

Update 2.04pm: Firefighters continue to work to extinguish the fire, as smoke continues to pour out of the windows. You can watch live video via Bernews Periscope page here.

Update 2.24pm: The fire continues to blaze…new live video available here on our Facebook page.

1-Fullscreen capture 922017 22310 PM-001

Update 2.38pm: The roof has collapsed…firefighters continue to battle the blaze. The screenshot below from Bernews live broadcast shows the scene at 2.35pm.

2.35pm rob fire sept 17

Update 2.47pm: Screenshot below shows the scene at 2.45pm.

2.45pm sept 17 fire

Update 2.52pm: Another section of the roof just collapsed, screenshot below shows the scene at 2.52pm.

2.52pm 423rasdads

Update 3.13pm: Screenshot from our live broadcast showing the scene one minute ago

3.12pm edfy8erwtrqe

Update 3.17pm: The police said, “The Bermuda Police Service is asking for the public to avoid the area around Robertson’s Pharmacy. It is a very active scene and the area is closed to vehicular and pedestrian traffic.

“Presently there are individuals who are in the area to look and that is not very helpful and or productive at this point. Please avoid the area until further notice.”

“The Roads Policing Unit is in place directing traffic away from the area. Persons living and working in the area should expect some delays and inconvenience.”

Update 3.32pm: Firefighters are now dispersing water from above the building, screenshot below shows scene as of 3.31pm

3.31pm-Fullscreen capture 922017 33110 PM-001

Update 4.32pm: Firefighters remain on scene, still wetting down the building. However flames are no longer visible and the smoke has greatly reduced.

2.5 hour live video replay showing from around 2.30pm – 5.00pm

Update 5.11pm: St George’s restaurants and businesses showed their thanks to the BFRS by delivering food and beverages to firefighters as they worked.

Update 6.10pm: Video below showing a quick look of the damage from the fire

Update 6.14pm: Audio statement below from Fire Service spokesperson Acting Lieutenant Russann Francis, updating on the situation as of 6pm

In providing an update at around 6pm this evening, Fire Service spokesperson Acting Lieutenant Russann Francis told Bernews, “At this moment, we have teams who are wetting down the hot spots in the building. The roof has collapsed, and we are just trying to ensure that we get each hot spot as best we can.

“At this moment, the roads are still closed off, and we cannot give an estimated time as to when they will be open. We’ve had a structural engineer who has come down to assess the building.”

Update 7.45pm: While the fire appears to be out and the scene has calmed down considerably, Firefighters remain on scene.

Update 10.30pm: Traffic flow in the area was restored at approximately 9.45pm.

Update 7.05am, Sept 3: MP Renee Ming said, “I am currently off island and am deeply saddened to learn of the fire at the Robertson’s Drugstore

“My colleagues in the Progressive Labour Party join me in expressing these sentiments and offer our greatest sympathies to the Rothwell family, employees of Robertson’s Drugstore and the area residents. For us St. Georgians, the drugstore is a staple of the St. George’s community as it is the only drugstore that many St. Georgians have ever utilized.

“While the property damage is a tough pill to swallow, I think I speak for all when I say human loss would be more tragic and we can only be grateful that no injuries were sustained.

“Upon my return, I hope to have the opportunity to speak with those affected and offer any support they may need.”

The photos below are from around 12pm just after the fire started:









Fire at Robertsons store in St Georges Bermuda 2017 Sept (1)

Fire at Robertsons store in St Georges Bermuda 2017 Sept (2)

Fire at Robertsons store in St Georges Bermuda 2017 Sept (3)

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Category: Accidents and fires, All, News, Videos

Comments (25)

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  1. Street Smart says:

    I Pray no one has been hurt.

    • strong athheist says:

      Like that will help.Stop believing in fairytales and do something to help

      • Once Upon A Time says:

        Is “athheist” akin to athiest?

        Or maybe good spelling is just a fairytale?

      • VJ says:

        Wow, did you really take the time out to write such a nasty message? No-one troubles you for being an atheist (which you can’t even spell), so don’t trouble people that want to send prayers their way. So sad just reading this, your negativity isn’t helping.

      • alafiyah says:

        SOme people like atheist, hates himself so much that he cannot share any love or concern for fellow men.

      • One Who Escaped says:

        Really?? I’m an athiest too, but I still appreciate the thought that goes into someone fo faith sending me their prayers.

      • Street Smart says:

        I don’t believe in fairytales! I believe in God. Atheism never helped anyone or anything!!

  2. puzzled says:

    3rd time in 40 years.

  3. Sofar Bie says:

    I believe this is the second time this building caught on fire, the last time I was primary school in the seventies. Could someone confirm this for me?

    • loveme says:

      no it was a restaurant

    • Bermyrock says:

      I have always lived in StGeo and I think you are right , this is the second time . I was also in school at StGeo Prep last time .

  4. To think that this deja vu. Terrible.
    Hopefully, no one was injured.
    Lovely pharmacy!!

  5. mike bishop says:

    This is the second time in my memory that there was a fire there…the first was 1977. The drugstore had a soda fountain counter at one point before moving across the road where Wahoo’s is now i believe..very sad to see.

  6. JCS says:

    I remember the soda fountain well when I was a kid living there, but I’m talking about the fifties. Great chocolate ice cream sodas! It’s such a lovely store and a great place to go for Christmas shopping as they have lovely, unusual gifts.

    • Time Shall Tell says:

      This was a for sure go to store at Christmas time with their perfect selections for stocking stuffers. This will be a sure miss this year. The over all store was perfection, the pharmacy was also great. I wonder what will happen with Dr.West’s office? I hope he has all his patients files backed up onto digital format. Really hope no one was hurt & that everything gets rebuilt soon.

      • Time Shall Tell says:

        I just noticed that Dr.West’s section hadn’t caught on fire so I am sure him as well as his patients are glad in knowing their medical records are fine.

  7. trudi pugh says:

    I was away at school in 1977 but the soda fountain treats were always fun for my family on a Saturday or Sunday drive. When I returned and had a family, we used to always start our Christmas shopping at Robertson’s. Such a great variety with definite quality.
    I used to always smile at the Bermuda’s “Who’s Who in Business”. They never had the current year but always had the previous two years. It made you want to buy all of the editions.

    May the owners and tenants secure a safe and quick recovery.
    Loving St. George’s.

  8. Athena says:

    Lovely store and great for Christmas shopping.

    Always go in when I am in St. George’s and pick up cards as they have a different and nice selection.

    Glad no one was hurt and hope all goes well for them to rebuild.

  9. Coffee says:

    A , that store had stuff in there you can’t find nowhere else on the Island .
    Good Stuff ..

    Open up late in the afternoon on Sunday though

    Might as well take over the old police station … Bet the rents cheap

  10. Mitchell says:

    Perhaps, instead of bickering, we could take a moment to thank the firefighters. Fires of any magnitude are tricky enough to handle, but something on this scale requires special knowledge, not to mention bravery. And condolences to those whose jobs and businesses are effected by this sad event. Flames being extinguished is only the beginning of a long journey back.

  11. Hello says:

    Oh no….a great store, hope they can rebuild soon, or temporarily relocate.

  12. JUNK YARD DOG says:

    They inspect our vehicles annually !
    Why not our buildings?

    Then only until it is too late !

    ::::::: Smoke alarms::::::: every building should have them as the device makes a wonderful birthday and holiday gift.

    Fire safety education.
    Driver & road safety education.
    Water safety education.
    Hurricane safety education.

    should all be an on going programs on all social media outlets.

    What are the Ministers on both sides of the fence doing ?

  13. overboardhope says:

    What an awful fire to such a wonderful drugstore and Dr’s. office. It was the best!

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