Mambaling fire destroys 84 houses, displaces 446 persons
CEBU CITY, Philippines — An afternoon fire on May 31 razed at least 84 houses and displaced 119 families or 446 persons in Sitio Puntod, Barangay Mambaling, Cebu City.
Wesley Yñigo, Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office (CCDRRMO) operations chief, told CDN Digital in a phone interview on May 31 that these were the data they gathered in their initial report as of 6:12 p.m.
Senior Fire Officer 1 (SFO1) Leo Pastrana of the Cebu City Fire Station, for his part, estimated the damage to property at P1.2 million.
Pastrana said that they were still investigating the cause of the fire since they were still in their overhauling operations at the fire scene.
He said that the fire was reported at 2:19 p.m. It was then raised to the second alarm at 2:27 p.m. Minutes later, the fire was raised to its third alarm at 2:35 p.m.
For a fire ground commander to raise a fire alarm to second and third alarm means that he needs more firetrucks to help put out the fire.
For the third alarm, at least 10 firetrucks may respond to the fire scene.
Pastrana said that the fire was only put under control at 3:42 p.m. or more than an hour later.
Read more: Ponce 2 fire kills 2, burns 50 homes
This is the second big fire that hit Cebu City this month. The first one happened on May 11 in Sitio Ponce 2 in Barangay Carreta. Two elderly couple died in that fire that destroyed an estimated 50 houses and displaced at least 700 persons.
On the May 31 fire, Pastrana also said that they would verify claims that a spark from an electric wire caused the fire which started on the two-story house of the Amora family.
Haide Amora, 55, one of the residents of the house where the fire started, said that an electric wire connected to a neighbor’s house sparked, causing the roof near the wire was to catch fire.
The line of the their neighbor’s electric wire was allegedly over their house.
She said this was the reason the second floor of their house was gutted first, following their whole house and their van parked nearby.
The fire also razed their internet café, which had 20 units of computers, in the ground floor of the house.
Haide said she was tending to her stall at D. Jakosalem Street when the fire broke out.
She said that they had asked their neighbor not to let the electric line pass near the roof of our house, but she claimed that their request was not heeded.
The Amora family was not able to retrieve any of their belongings.
Meanwhile, the fire victims would be allowed to stay at the Abbya Gym in Sitio Abbya of the barangay.
Anne Marie Palomo, acting barangay Mambaling captain, said, in a phone interview with CDN Digital, that the fire victims could stay at the Abbya Gym and if there would be a need they would use Viking Gym at Sitio Viking to accommodate more fire victims.
“The City Government will provide meals tonight through the DSWS (Department of Social Welfare and Services),” said Palomo./dbs
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