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Hectares of forest gutted by two fires in Bontoc barangay

Two forest fires hit a barangay in Bontoc, Mountain Province razing a few structures and at least 16 hectares of forest on Tuesday night.

According to Dano Tingcungco's report on “24 Oras”, one incident was reported in Sitio Napo in Barangay Bontoc Ili at  4:40 p.m. The blaze lasted for more than five hours as firefighters struggled to put it out due to strong winds, and limited water supply.

The other fire hit Sitio Balitian in the same barangay around the same time.  The blaze was declared fire out at around 10 p.m. 

The Bontoc Fire Station and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources are looking into the possible cause of the fire incidents and the extent of its damage in the area. 

“Pagdating po ng ating mga kasamahan, totally na nasunog na po yung makeshift structure po. Bale naging nagtuloy na lang na nasunog yung mga damo at nagkaroon na po ng forest fire,” Bontoc Fire Station FO1 Kevin Dawey said about the fire in Sitio Napo. 

(When our team arrived, the makeshift structure was totally destroyed. The fire razed the dried leaves, that's why the forest fire broke out.)

“Limited water supply po kasi wala pong dumarating na augment na water delivery...Gumagamit po sila ng fire swatter po... 'Yung may flat na goma po tapos na may handle tapos i-a-ano po sa mga sunog, sa mga maliliit na sunog po para hindi na po magkalat,” he added. 

(We also had a limited water supply so we used fire swatters to put it out. Fire swatters are flat rubbers with handles used to extinguish small flames.)

No one was hurt in the incident, the report said. However, a makeshift structure used as a junk shop, and a kitchen was destroyed by the fire.  —Sherylin Untalan/NB, GMA Integrated News