AT LEAST 60 families lost their homes to a fire that razed 35 houses in Purok Lampirong, Barangay 2, Bacolod City, Tuesday afternoon, the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) said.
Senior Inspector Publio Ploteña, acting city fire marshal, said they sounded a second alarm after they were informed about the blaze at 12:45 p.m.
Several fire trucks were dispatched to the area and the blaze was put under control around 2 p.m.
Ploteña said 31 houses were destroyed while four were damaged.
He added that the fire started from the house of Crizelda Benzuela and spread quickly as neighboring houses were made of light materials.
An unidentified man was injured after he attempted to save some of his belongings.
Investigation showed that the fire started at the second floor of Benzuela’s house where three toddlers were playing with matches, Ploteña said.
Some animals, including pigs, were trapped and died.
Emily Toledo, 35, said she was doing the laundry when she saw the fire in the house of Benzuela, a vendor.
She added that the fire spread quickly and she failed to save their belongings along with her 25 pigs.
Of the 25 pigs, she was able to rescue only five piglets that sustained burns.
Toledo said Benzuela usually leaves her house unattended.
Barangay 2 village chief Victor Aliguen said they will use the barangay’s calamity fund to help his affected constituents.
He added that they are assisting the affected families, who were informal settlers, in finding an evacuation area.
They proposed to use the Barangay Hall and the area of Andres Bonifacio Elementary School, Aliguen said.
Bacolod City Mayor Monico Puentevella also visited the area and he assured the affected families of assistance from the city, Aliguen added.