8 families, evacuees, lose homes to Naga fire
Their homes were spared by the massive landslide in Barangay Tinaan in Naga City, more than a month ago, but on Monday (Oct. 29), the houses of eight families, temporarily displaced by the landslide, were lost to an early morning fire.
No one was hurt since six of the eight families were staying at two evacuation centers in the city.
The two families, who refused to heed the forced evacuation order and continued to stay in their houses which are included in the one-kilometer radius from the ground zero of the landslide in nearby Sitio Sindulan, narrowly escaped from their burning houses.
“Wala ko kahibaw naunsa to. Nakamata ra man ko kay gialsa ako sa akong anak kay mapagod unya kuno ko. Nagkayo na man ang atop ato (I did not know what happened. I woke up after my son carried me from the burning house. I could see the roof burning as we escaped from the burning house),” said 85-year-old Fermina Abalo, one of the fire victims, who refused to heed the evacuation order because she needed to continue earning a living.
“Wala man ko niadto (at the evacuation center) kay mang-obra man ko og pangguna. Dili man ko makapangguna didto unya manglabada man pod ko (I did not go to the evacuation center because I have to work by cleaning the area. At the evacuation center, I could not do my work there and I could also wash my clothes here),” she said.
Another consideration for her to stay in the area was her 44-year-old mentally-challenged son, who lived on the other house that was razed by yesterday’s fire.
“Anhi lang ko dinhi sa kapilya. Magpungko lang ko diri kay wala na man koy balay. Kaluy-an ra ko sa mahal nga Birhen dinhi (I will just stay in the chapel. I will just stay here since I do not have a house anymore. Mother Mary would take care of me),” Abalo said.
A total of eight houses were razed by the fire while their owners were staying at different evacuation centers.
Naga City Mayor Kristine Chiong already ordered for the disbursement of P7,000 financial assistance to the fire victims.
According to Fire Officer 1 Vincent Pleños of the City of Naga Fire Department, the fire alarm was reported at 4:50 a.m. and was declared fire out at 5:48 am.
Although the fire was only raised to first alarm, Pleños said it took them a while to penetrate the area because of the narrow passageways.
Seven of the eight razed houses were made of light materials.
Pleños said they were looking into an electrical short circuit or a butane canister explosion as the possible cause of the fire.
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