1 dead, 5 hurt in 41 Metro fires
A woman died while at least five others were hurt when at least 41 fires broke out in Metro Manila from Dec. 31 to New Year’s Day.
Helen Rugas died after she was trapped inside a mixed-used building on Araneta Street in Barangay, San Antonio, Pasig City at 12:21 a.m. on Wednesday.
More than 300 families lost their homes after a fire razed houses along Pasig Line in Sta. Ana district in Manila at 3:58 a.m. Wednesday.
The fire reached Task Force Bravo before it was put out at 7:56 a.m., leaving Fire officer 1 Paul Tanguilan, Winnie Fredo Lipata, 44, Arjhay Calderon, 27, Jerome Caveti, 18, and Zaldy Arias, 34, wounded.
Fire officers were investigating the cause of fire, including the possibility it was triggered by a lighted firecracker.
“There’s a possibility that this (fire incident) is firecracker-related. There’s no concrete evidence or statement but in occasions like the New Year, there are plenty of firecrackers that were discarded on the streets,” said Fire Insp. John Joseph Jalique, chief of the Manila Fire District (MFD) Intelligence and Investigation Section.
Another 100 families in Quezon City also greeted the New Year on the streets after their houses were razed by a fire on Tuesday night.
The fire started at the second-floor of the house of a certain Liza Obispo on Palanas Street in Barangay Vasra at 10:44 p.m.
It burned down at least 50 houses, reaching Task Force Alpha before it was extinguished at 2:22 a.m. Wednesday.
Smaller fires were also reported in the cities of Las Piñas, Pasay, Makati, Marikina, Caloocan, Malabon, Navotas and Valenzuela.
More than 1,000 houses and establishments and some P3 million worth of property went up in smoke in just 24 hours.
There were only 11 fires recorded in the same period last year, from the morning of Dec. 31, 2018 to the morning of the following day, which left one dead and six hurt. – with a report from Nikka G. Valenzuela
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