BFP: More fires during New Year’s celebrations

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Friday, January 4, 2013


THE Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) Cordillera revealed a total of 27 cases of fires from December 1 to 25, 2012 in the region.

Among the 27, four accidents were caused by pyrotechnics which all occurred in Abra.

During the past three months prior to December, cases of fire accidents only ranged from eight to 13. In 2011, a total of 191 fire accidents were recorded versus 2012’s 194 cases.

Last January 1, fire razed a bungalow with mixed materials (like bamboo, woods, and anahaw leaves as roofing) called the PRB Kambingan, Sinanglawan and Videoke in Calaba, Bangued, Abra. The building is owned by Elsa Co.

The Abra BFP said the fire originated from the house’s roof because of a sky lantern that fell on the flammable material. No one was hurt in the incident. The estimated damage is about P30,000.

Ground Commander SFO1 Prudencio Alzate Jr. said the incident was only at the first alarm.

He said they were informed about the fire by a certain Jasper Mateo, who called his office. They conducted fire suppression upon arrival at the site.

Witnesses revealed the sky lantern’s ember fell down at the roofing, which could have started the blaze.

Another fire occurred in M.H. Del Pilar Street, Bangued, Abra on the same day wherein it partially razed a two-storey residential building owned by Aurora Lupido.

The fire department investigation revealed the origin of fire was at the gutter because of firecrackers specifically "kwitis."

Alzate said around P500 is the estimated damage cost of the building.

Concerned residents helped put out the fire before the fire fighters arrived. The cause of fire is a "kwitis" that landed on the gutter full of dried leaves.

Earlier on December 31, 2012, a fire was also ignited in McKinley Street, Zone 4, Bangued, Abra. The fire attacked the Ataw Marketing owned by Marlyn Masculino due to sky lantern.

Fire Ground Commander James Severino Millare Jr. said the fire started at the third floor or rooftop of the building when a sky lantern landed at the pile of boxes. The estimated damage is about P300. No casualties were recorded.

Meanwhile, P1.2-million worth of four residential houses were engulfed by fire in December 31 in Payeo, Besao, Mt. Province. The owners of the four houses were Margarita Aw–asen, Alberto Salisa, Bernice Mantiling, and Lucas Agnaonao.

Initial investigation revealed the fire originated from the one storey house of Agnaonao which is temporarily being utilized as a stock house and was unoccupied prior to the fire.

Linda Salisa, a witness, said she noticed the fire started at the receiving room of Agnaonao’s house until it affected nearby houses.

The cause of fire is still being investigated.

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on January 05, 2013.

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