TEN persons are in a “very critical condition” due to the burns they obtained in the fire that hit the House Technology Industries (HTI) complex at the Cavite Export Processing Zone in General Trias town on Wednesday evening, Cavite Governor Jesus Crispin Remulla said Thursday.

Remulla said they are already arranging the transfer of the ten persons who suffered third-degree burn to the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) which is more equipped for the treatment of the patients.

He said a total of 104 people were brought to the hospital last night due to the injuries they obtained during the fire but 60 of them were already sent home after being treated.

Among those hurt were Japanese executives Nahgae Hideki, 44, and Tushimitsu Endo, 66.

However, Remulla said the accounting of all the employees of the HTI, a Japanese company that manufactures housing materials, is still being conducted as they believe there were employees who were trapped inside the factory.

“The fire happened as the employees were about to change their shift. Some people already got in but others were able to run out,” he said.

“Kasi ngayong oras na ito, all these people outside are supposed to be inside the factory which is (still) burning. Kaya ina-account pa namin ang lahat ng tao so we know who are missing and who are in the hospital para malaman namin kung ilan talaga ang nawawala at ma-trace natin kung anong nangyari sa kanila,” Remulla added.

The fire in the said factory started at around 5 p.m. reportedly due to a power-saw that malfunctioned.

"Biglang nagkalat daw 'yung apoy. Andun 'yung mga pintura, insulator. Madali kasing magkalat ang apoy sa ganung element," Fire Senior Superintendent Sergio Soriano Jr., Calabarzon said, based on the account of the survivors.

He said the fire which reached Task Force Delta was declared under control around 12:30 a.m. but fire operations were continued since there is still the presence of smoke as most of the materials inside the factory were combustible.

Remulla said they tapped Scene of the Crime Operatives (SOCO), Disaster Victim Identification and other government agencies which may help them address the incident. (SunStar Philippines)