Family of 7 dies in CamSur fire

Cet Dematera (The Philippine Star) - November 10, 2020 - 12:00am

LEGAZPI CITY, Philippines — Seven members of a family died in a fire that gutted a two-story apartment in Tigaon, Camarines Sur shortly before midnight on Sunday, police reported yesterday.

Six of the fatalities were identified as Jason Verdejo, 25; his wife Angelica; their son Arch Jay Don, 3; and Angelica’s siblings Gerard Lee, 13; Leana Ysabel, 7, and Alliah Cristina, 6, all surnamed Cea.

Probers have yet to identify the other fatality who was described as a 10-year-old boy.

The victims’ remains were recovered by responding firefighters from the second floor of the house.

The bodies were charred almost beyond recognition, according to Senior Fire Officer 3 Joey Villarama, Tigaon fire marshal.

The fire started from unattended candles on the ground floor of the apartment located in Barangay Vinagre, Villarama said.

The victims were asleep on the second floor, where they were trapped when the blaze broke out at around 11:30 p.m.

Firefighters declared fireout at 12:30 a.m.

Reports said the victims had just transferred to the apartment five hours before the blaze broke out. They came from nearby Lagonoy town.

“The victims could have fallen asleep soundly due to fatigue. They must have forgotten to put out the candles dowstairs,” Villarama said, adding the family did not know where the fire exit was as they were not familiar with the place.

Residents have been using candles as the town has been without power due to Super Typhoon Rolly, Villarama said.

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