December 28, 2012

Fire on Palm Island Resort leads to relocation of in-house guests

Guests at Palm Island Resort were relocated to alternate resorts on nearby islands, including St Lucia and Barbados, after a fire on Monday — Christmas Eve.{{more}}

Larry Basham, chief operating officer of Elite Island Resorts, which provides global marketing representation to Palm Island, told SEARCHLIGHT yesterday that the fire broke out around 4 a.m. in the generator room at the resort.

“The fire was confined to the electrical generator area, away from guest accommodations,” Basham wrote in an email response to a request for comment.

“No one was injured, no other structures were damaged, and the resort’s security and staff members quickly extinguished the fire, using fire extinguishers and sand. All in-house guests were relocated to alternate resorts on nearby islands, including St Lucia and Barbados.”

Basham said it appears that the fire resulted from a mechanical failure at one of the generators.

“Namely, one of the diesel generators threw a piston through the generator’s engine block, causing the generator to catch fire. This was a mechanical failure, not human error. The resort’s generators are professionally maintained on an ongoing basis by both on-site and visiting professionals. This was simply a very unfortunate incident that was not foreseeable,” he said.

Reports had said that there was another blaze at the resort of the privately-owned island recently.

“There has not been any other major fires or other similar incidents at Palm Island in recent times,” Basham, however, said.

“Palm Island takes the comfort, safety, and security of its guests and employees very seriously. We work diligently to provide a safe and secure environment for all to enjoy. As far as we know, Palm Island has never experienced this type of generator fire in the past,” Basham told SEARCHLIGHT.

“This is truly a freak occurrence, which is very surprising, considering the fact that Palm Island uses professionally maintained, top-end diesel generators to create electricity on the island. This equipment is generally considered very safe and reliable. As always, Palm Island will continue its vigilance with regard to all health and safety matters on the island,” he further said.

He told SEARCHLIGHT the resort is “looking forward to making the necessary repairs and replacements as quickly as possible, so that Palm Island may resume operations and continue providing world-class holidays to visitors from around the world.” (