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Cebu News

7T homeless in Lorega fire

Grace Melanie I. Lacamiento, Flor Z. Perolina & Niña S. Abenoja - The Philippine Star

CEBU, Philippines - Around 7,000 people were left homeless after an estimated 500 houses in eight sitios were destroyed by a fire that hit Barangay Lorega-San Miguel, Cebu City, yesterday afternoon.

According to the Bureau of Fire Protection the fire alarm was received around 4:57 p.m. The affected sitios were Lawis, Kamansi, Seares, San Roque, Laguna, Laray, Quadrangle and Itum-yuta.

Councilor Dave Tumulak, also head of the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, said the victims comprise 1,500 families or roughly 40 percent of the barangays population.

The BFP said the fire was declared under control around 7:26 p.m. They are still conducting an investigation where and how the fire started; however, it allegedly began at the house of a certain Bobby Hortezano.

A man was looking for his 10-year-old daughter, Jaira Gutual, who went missing during the fire. A burned body was later found among the ruins but it could not be determined yet if it was human or animal.

Elvis Nella, who lives in the house of his aunt in Sitio Lawis, said that they believe the fire started in Sitio Kamansi. He said the fire broke out an hour after he arrived from work. 

Nella said he now plans to stay in their house in Talisay City since his aunt’s house was among those that were destroyed. The barangay hall, chapel and sports complex of Lorega were partially burned by the fire.

The affected families will be temporarily sheltered in the Barangay T. Padilla gym, the Day-as gym, the Zapatera gym and the Zapatera Elementary School.

Mandaue fire

In Mandaue City, two car surplus dealerships and a restaurant also went up in flames in Sitio Telecom, Barangay Casuntingan yesterday afternoon.

The Mandaue City Fire Department received the alarm at 2:55 p.m. and declared it under control 40 minutes after they arrived at the scene. It was raised to Task Force Alpha at 3:10 p.m. as per assessment.

More than 20 fire trucks from nearby cities and towns arrived at the fire scene and converged at Hernan Cortes St.

Fire marshal Senior Insp. Joel Abarquez could not yet officially pinpoint where the fire originated as of press time pending further investigation, but witnesses claimed the fire originated at the interior portion of JID Surplus Compound and spread to the adjacent 2-Way Car Surplus to the north portion and to Pampas Grill and Restaurant with Videoke rooms and billiard halls.

The fire also partially damaged the house of the owner of Pampas Grill.

JID Surplus manager Joseph Oliver Wenceslao doesn’t believe the fire started from their surplus center as there their electrical wirings are still in place and their car batteries were also stored separately.

However, Abarquez said video taken by a witness shows the fire started at JID Surplus, but he will still call representatives of both surplus shops to determine where the fire really began.

No injuries or casualties were reported, Abarquez estimated the damage at between P1 million to P3 million as there were cars destroyed.  —/BRP (FREEMAN)

ABARQUEZ

BARANGAY CASUNTINGAN

BARANGAY LOREGA-SAN MIGUEL

BARANGAY T

BOBBY HORTEZANO

BUREAU OF FIRE PROTECTION

CEBU CITY

CITY DISASTER RISK REDUCTION AND MANAGEMENT COUNCIL

COUNCILOR DAVE TUMULAK

ELVIS NELLA

FIRE

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