Villagers flee as a warehouse full of pyrotechnics and firecrackers exploded Saturday, January 28, 2011 in Zamboanga City in the southern Philippines. At least a dozen people are injured in the fire that burned also razed many houses, mostly shacks. (Mindanao Examiner Photo)
ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / Jan. 28, 2011) – At least a dozen people were injured in a huge fire that broke out Friday in a warehouse containing pyrotechnics in Zamboanga City in the southern Philippines, officials said.
But many were also hurt in a stampede after villagers ran for safety with their belongings after a series of explosions inside the warehouse owned by Pacific Hardware near downtown Zamboanga.
There were no immediate reports of casualties, but hardware workers said there could be people trapped inside the warehouse.
Officials said the warehouse was being use to stack the pyrotechnics and firecrackers. “The warehouse is owned by Pacific Hardware and it’s they all use it to put everything, including firecrackers,” said City Administrator Antonio Orendain.
Fire officials said the warehouse is being use to stack pyrotechnics. At least 10 houses near the warehouse were burned and one woman said she was lucky to have escape alive. “I was almost trap in the fire and really lucky to escape in our burning house,” she said.
The fire triggered explosions from pyrotechnics and firecrackers and the blasts shattered glass windows and wooden ceilings of establishments and hospital near the warehouse.
Officials said it was illegal to stack pyrotechnics in the warehouse without proper documents from the fire department, particularly in residential areas. (Mindanao Examiner)