June 28, 2005 — Traffic was backed up on both sides of Mandela Circle on Tuesday morning due to a fire in the Tramcon Building in Havensight. The building, which houses AT&T, A.J. Weiss and Associates, and a call station for tourists, also adjoins the tramway which ferries tourists to Paradise Point.
"The tram was not affected at all," Donald C. Charles Sr., assistant to the director of Fire Services, said. "However, the top floor of the building, A.J. Weiss and Associates, was about 90 percent burnt, and the second floor [AT&T] had extensive water damage."
Fire trucks deployed from the Hotel Company in Charlotte Amalie and Echo Company in Dorothea, responded to a call at 5 a.m., and arrived on the scene half an hour later. However, trucks were not seen leaving the area until noon.
"The initial blaze, on the second floor, was put out about three minutes after we came in," Charles said. "However, the heat from the blaze extended to the roof, "he said. "When our men went up there to check it out, they discovered that the roof had a layer of galvanize, a layer of insulation, and another layer of galvanize.
"The men had to take drills and loosen the top layer of galvanize in order to get to the insulation and put out the rest of the fire. That was the most challenging part."
Charles added that the cause of the fire is still under investigation, but does know that the fire started in the northeastern section of the building.
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