CONFLAGRATION. A two-hour fire razes 80 houses and displaces around 160 families in a community of closely-built houses Thursday (Sept. 22, 2022) in Barangay Recodo, Zamboanga City. The City Social Welfare and Development Office had been ordered to provide immediate assistance to the victims. (Photo courtesy of City Hall PIO)

ZAMBOANGA CITY – At least 80 houses mostly made of light materials were razed in a two-hour fire that hit a community of closely-built residences in a west coast barangay here.

Supt. Lucio Albaracin, chief of the Zamboanga City Fire District, said the fire broke out shortly after 11 a.m. Thursday in Purok 2, Barangay Recodo, some 15.2 kilometers west of city hall.

Albaracin said the fire rapidly engulfed the closely-built houses as most of the structure are made of light materials.

One of the houses razed was owned by Wahab Ibba, the barangay chairperson of Recodo.

“The fire was caused by an unattended stove at the house of a certain Hakim. Someone was cooking food and left it unattended,” Ibba said in a radio interview.

Ibba said the families displaced by the fire incident are temporarily housed at the covered court of the village.

Albaracin they have yet to ascertain the damage to properties although initially, local authorities estimated it at PHP500,000.

Mayor John Dalipe has ordered the City Social Welfare and Development Office to provide the immediate needs of the fire victims. (PNA)