GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 28 Dec) — Around 200 families were rendered homeless after a huge fire hit a portion of a crowded seaside community here Friday morning.
Fire Officer 3 Jayson Bato, investigator of the city central fire station, said the fire broke out 9:30 a.m. at a residential area in Purok Islam, Barangay Dadiangas South.
He said the affected area is located in front of the city central public market and several meters away from the barangay hall.
No casualties were reported but the fire gutted down at least 100 structures that were mostly made of light materials, he said.
“The burned structures included residential and boarding houses as well as makeshift stalls of several vendors,” he said.
The fire reached the first alarm and was declared under control by 10:05 a.m.
The responding firefighters came from the city central fire station, Calumpang fire sub-station, Alabel fire station, Chinese Chamber Volunteer Fire Brigade, KCC Mall and RD fire brigades.
Citing their investigation, Bato said the fire started at the second floor of a house owned by a certain Haron Uto.
He said Uto had been out the last two days and supposedly left the lights on inside the house.
One of Uto’s neighbors claimed seeing electrical sparks inside the house prior to the incident, he said.
Authorities initially placed the damage at P500,000.
The barangay council of Dadiangas South said the incident affected around 200 families, all informal settlers.
The City Social Welfare and Development Office dispatched a team at the site to provide relief goods and assist the other needs of the affected residents. (MindaNews)