THIRTY-FOUR houses in Molo, Iloilo City were razed by a fire early evening of Sept 10, 2018.
The conflagration that erupted 7:40 p.m. struck the heavily populated villages of Boulevard and West Habog-Habog.
Chief Inspector Christopher Regencia, Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP)-Iloilo City fire marshal, said 30 houses were totally razed while 4 were partially damaged.
In Boulevard village, 28 houses were destroyed and 3 were partially damaged while in West Habog-Habog village, two houses were totally destroyed and one was partially damaged.
Regencia said they received the fire call at around 7:23 p.m.
“We immediately responded but when we arrived, the fire already engulfed four houses,” Regencia added.
Regencia said the conflagration quickly spread to adjacent houses.
“Mabilis lang nasunog kasi dikit-dikit ang mga bahay. Most of these structures were also made of light materials,” he said.
Regencia said fire trucks had a hard time penetrating the scene because of narrow alleys.
Only one truck was able to position near the fire scene and other responders had to locate the trucks at a distance.
The area was also slightly sloping and muddy when fire personnel and volunteers responded.
The fire was put under control at 9:15 p.m. while fire was out at 10:19 p.m.
Initial investigation showed that the fire started at the house of a certain Rodolfo Buenavista.
Some claimed that an unattended candle cause the fire but a neighbor claimed to have seen the fire originating from the ceiling of Buenavista’s house.
“It appeared that house had no occupant when the incident happened. That’s why, the fire was not immediately put out,” Regencia said.
Fire probers recovered cut pieces of electrical wiring that could indicate that the cause of fire was electrical in nature.
“It could be due to overload or short circuit of electrical wiring. Pwedeng hindi tama o maluwag ang pagkakakabit,” he added.
BFP investigators estimated the structural damage at P1.2 million.