Philippine Daily Inquirer



On the eve of Fire Prevention Month, at least 80 families were left homeless in a fire that hit a slum area along a riverbank in Barangay Tanza, Navotas City.

Residents said the fire, which started at around 8:23 p.m. Wednesday and reached Task Force Alpha before being put out past midnight, originated from the house owned by Flordeliza Reyes and was caused by an electric fan that overheated inside her locked bedroom.

In an interview, Violeta and Bernardo Buco, who both rented a room with their 15-year-old granddaugh­ter in Reyes’ house, recalled hearing an explosion inside the bedroom. It was too late for them to get into the bedroom and put out the flames, which spread around the house within minutes.

A report reaching Fire Marshal Supt. Edwin Vargas said damage to property was estimated at around P300,000. No deaths no injuries were reported.

Most of the damaged homes were made of plywood, with some built along the edge of Tangos River. Waterways are considered “danger zones” under the Urban Housing Developmen­t Act of 1999.

Leandro Serrano, City Hall’s point person for disaster mitigation, said the local government would soon look for an incity relocation site for the displaced families.

The evacuees were given temporary shelter at the Tanza basketball court, Serrano said.

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