7 dead after passenger vessel heading to Quezon catches fire

This handout photo taken and released on May 23, 2022 from the Philippine Coastguard shows the remains of a ferry near Real town, Quezon province. At least seven people were killed and scores plucked to safety in the Philippines on May 23 after a fire ripped through a ferry and forced passengers to jump overboard, coast guard and witnesses said.
Handout / Philippine Coastguard / AFP

MANILA, Philippines (Updated 9:45 a.m.) — Five women and two men died after a vessel carrying 124 passengers excluding crew members heading to Real, Quezon caught fire early Monday morning, according to the Philippine Coast Guard.

The PCG said in a bulletin that four are still unaccounted for while 105 were rescued from the Mercraft 2 that left Polillo Island at around 5 a.m. and was reportedly just 1,000 yards away from the port of Real when a fire broke out from its engine room.

Rescue operations and firefighting headed by PCG personnel in Real in coordination with the local government there and other Roro vessels are still underway.

Mercraft 2 has been towed to the nearest shoreline of Baluti Island in Real, Quezon.  — Xave Gregorio with a report from Patricia Lourdes Viray


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