Lahug fire destroys 25 houses
(The Freeman) - July 21, 2019 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines —  A fire destroyed 25 houses yesterday in Sitio San Roque, Barangay Lahug, Cebu City, leaving close to 200 people homeless.

Antonio Panal, 73, and his partner Susana Rama 63, said it was past 3 a.m. when they were awakened by smoke and saw that a fire was already spreading in their house. The two were able to rush out of the house along with Susana’s mother Sotera Rama, 87, but weren’t able to save anything else.

Panal said they have been living in the area for almost 10 years. They have a sari-sari store, a videoke machine, and rooms rented by students and workers.

Department of Social Welfare and Services chief Dr. Jeffry Ibones said that the victims will receive food assistance for three days and also cash assistance. Owner of destroyed houses will receive P20,000 while renters and sharers will receive P10,000. However, he said they are not sure yet if they can give something to lodgers.

“Amo pang i-open ni Mayor Edgardo Labella nga bisa’g makahatag lang ta’g gamay sa lodger bisag P5,000 at least naa lang sad silay mahatag naapektohan man sad sila sa sunog,” Ibones said.

Ibones also said as of 3 p.m. yesterday the final toll was 25 houses destroyed, two persons injured, and 185 people comprising 44 families left homeless.

Total estimated damage was pegged at P100,000.

The Bureau of Fire Protection received the alarm at 3:20 a.m., declared the fire under control at 3:52 a.m., then declared fire out 5:33 a.m.

The cause of the fire, which was raised to the second alarm, is still under investigation. — Jebert A. Sarsonas CNU Intern (FREEMAN)

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