ILIGAN CITY (MindaNews / 8 March) – A two-hour fire at a crowded residential area downtown that started before noon Tuesday razed 32 houses, displacing 80 families, officials said.
The fire affected mostly residential tightly packed houses made of light materials along Jose Ong St. in Purok 11, Barangay Saray.
Fire Officer III Jo-an Gasal, spokesperson of the local Bureau of Fire Protection office, said that fire alarm reached their office’s Task Force Bravo and immediately informed other personnel and volunteer firefighters in the city.
He said 12 firetrucks from the BFP and volunteer fire brigades from Gaisano, Adventist Medical Center, and those from Barangays Kiwalan, Tibanga and Villa Verde, with support from the Iligan City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office (ICDRRMO), helped in putting out the fire and rescue efforts.
The BFP declared fire out at 1:05 p.m.
Gasal estimated damage to structures at P750,000.
Senior Fire Officer II Julian Tangub Jr. a male resident suffered burn injuries at the back and was confined at the government-run Gregorio T. Lluch Memorial Hospital for treatment.
“We are still investigating the cause and origin of the fire,” he said.
Tangub said Tuesday’s fire was the second incident the country celebrates Fire Prevention Month.
The first fire incident, he said, was at the Development Bank of the Philippines compound at Barangay Mahayahay on March 1.
James Alburo, Saray barangay chairman, said that some 20 fire victims stayed at the Saray gymnasium while others were with their relatives and their respective churches as temporary shelter. He said help in the form of food, kitchen utensils, hygiene kits, blankets and other necessities came from various groups, the ICDRRMO, and the city government. (Richel V. Umel / MindaNews)