101 houses razed in Bacolod fire

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Wednesday, September 3, 2014

BACOLOD. Volunteer firefighters respond to the blaze that has consumed one of the houses in Barangay 39, Bacolod City, on Tuesday, September 2, 2014. (Merlinda A. Pedrosa)


BACOLOD CITY -- At least 24 families lost their homes to a fire that razed 101 houses in Purok Katilingban 1, Barangay 39, this city, Tuesday afternoon, causing an estimated damage of P2 million, said the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP).

No injuries were reported.

Chief Inspector Bartolome Beliran, city fire marshal, said they sounded a general alarm after they received the call around 12:35 p.m.

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General alarm means that neighboring cities have to assist and send their available fire trucks to respond to an ongoing fire incident.

Several fire trucks were dispatched to the area and the blaze was placed under control around 1:15 p.m.

Beliran said the fire started from the house of Omie and Butchoy Pitogo.

The BFP, though, is still conducting further investigation to determine the cause and final amount of damage resulting from the incident.

Beliran said the affected families were informal settlers and most of their houses were made of light materials.

He added that firefighters had difficulty penetrating the village because of the narrow road, adding it was also hard for them to locate the origin of fire.

Bacolod City fire victims salvage belongings
BACOLOD. Residents try to salvage some of their belongings. (Merlinda A. Pedrosa)


Some residents claimed that they saw a woman trapped inside a house, but fire investigators are still validating the report.

Resident Odette Togores said she actually saw the woman although she did not know if she survived.

It was difficult for firefighters to penetrate the area because of the narrow foot walk going to where the blaze started, she added.

Christian Afueg and Norma Rodriguez, also residents in the area, were in tears while seeing their houses on fire.

Afueg said he failed to save their appliances and personal belongings because the fire spread quickly.

Rodriguez said she was at work when she was informed that their house was also hit by fire. When she arrived, she saw her family crying because they lost their home and failed to save some of their belongings.

Rodriguez said that if the firefighters responded on time, maybe their house was spared because their place was far from where the blaze started.

Village councilman Romy Real said they are assisting the affected families in finding an evacuation area.

He said the houses of the affected families were set to be demolished, but they asked lot owner Rocky Lizares to give them more time to find a relocation site until the end of the school year. (Sun.Star Bacolod/Sunnex)

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on September 03, 2014.

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