AT LEAST 50 families lost their homes in an hour-long fire in the province of Zamboanga del Norte, the police reported Friday.

The Zamboanga del Norte Police Office said the fire broke out around 12:20 p.m. Thursday at Sitio Catadman in the village of Turno, Dipolog City.

Initial investigation showed that the fire started at the rented room of Jojong Peranres and rapidly spread to the nearby houses made of light materials.

The police said the firefighters failed to get near the fire scene due to narrow roads. They managed though to position the fire trucks a distance away to extinguish the flames.

The fire was contained around 1:21 p.m. or barely one hour after it broke out. It was caused by an electric short circuit.

Initial worth of property damage was placed at P150,000, the police added. (Bong Garcia)