Survivors of Mahdia Dorm Fire file multi-million dollar lawsuit against the State

Survivors of Mahdia Dorm Fire file multi-million dollar lawsuit against the State

Two of the teenage girls who survived the Mahdia Secondary School female dorm fire in May 2023, have filed separate multi-million dollar lawsuits against the state. Although the cases were filed back in October, they were only served on the Attorney General’s Chambers today.

Both cases are being filed through the parents of the two survivors. Attorney Eusi Anderson is representing the two families.

In Court documents, a 14-year-old survivor recalled suffering from smoke inhalation, severe burns about her body and severe trauma. She also detailed witnessing the death of her fellow students. A total of twenty students lost their lives in the fire, which ripped through the female dorm fo the Mahdia Secondary School.

The Court document noted that at all material times, the 14-year-old was a ward of the state and was in the care and custody of the state at the Mahdia School.

According to the pleadings, since the deadly fire, 14-year-old claimant has struggled to sleep, communicate and engage with her peers as she did before the incident.

She has reported severe trauma and mental distress upon reflection of the fire and the death of her friends and her own narrow escape.

The claims state that officials of the state were negligent and failed to equip the school with the necessary skills, experience and expertise in the management of an emergency scenario, and also failed to equip the school with illumination lights for an escape route, and other emergency systems to deal with a fire.

There were no fire extinguishers at the dorms when the fire struck, and exits were also not marked. The child suffered severe burns to her shoulder, face and both hands with partial loss of sight as a result of some damage to her eyes.

She is seeking in excess of $10 million from the state of Guyana.

The other survivor, who has filed a lawsuit against the state, is also 14-years-old.

She lost her sister in the fire, and in her Court filings, she recalled seeing her sister’s body being pulled from the burning building after she was able to escape.

In addition to suffering smoke inhalation and other injuries, she has also complained of psychological trauma and hallucinations. She is also seeking in excess of $10 Million from the state.

In July 2023, the Government reached an agreement with the families of the twenty children who perished in the fire, offering them $5 million each.

An offer was made to the families of the survivors also, but it is unclear whether it was accepted by all.

In that agreement, the Government shielded itself from any responsibility and liability for the incident. A Commission of Inquiry was also conducted into the incident.

A teenage student of the school is currently before the Courts facing murder charges in relation to the deaths.

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