Ormoc City – A fire erupted in a residential area in this city, the origin of which is currently under investigation by the local fire bureau.

The 7:35 pm fire incident in Purok Chrysanthemum of Barangay Cogon last Thursday (Feb. 22) displaced 43 households comprising 233 individuals, the city fire office said.

Allegedly ignited by lighted components falling from an electric post onto the roof of a nipa house, the fire quickly spread throughout the area.

Most of the residential structures in the vicinity were made of light materials, exacerbating the rapid spread of the flames.

The combination of light and concrete materials in some houses facilitated the fire’s swift engulfment of the 43 houses.

However, firefighters faced significant challenges due to the narrow passage leading to the fire site, which was only about one meter wide. This restricted access made it difficult for firefighters to enter the area, hindering their efforts to extinguish the blaze.

Many residents were unable to salvage their belongings due to the constrained passage.

To overcome these obstacles, firefighters and volunteers improvised by creating a hole in a concrete fence to allow water hoses to reach the fire. Additionally, some volunteers ascended ladders onto the roofs of nearby buildings to direct hoses towards the flames.

Multiple fire trucks from neighboring areas including Baybay City, Palompon, Matag-ob, Merida, Isabel, Albuera, Kananga, Tzu Chi, and PASAR from Isabel, joined the six firetrucks from the local fire bureau in combating the blaze, which escalated to the third alarm level.
Unfortunately, one resident, identified as Ivan Caliwan, sustained injuries while evacuating the area with personal belongings.

The fire was brought under control by approximately 9:34 pm and was completely extinguished by 10:25 pm.

The extent of the damage is yet to be determined though the local fire bureau initially estimated the damage at P774, 000.