- A fire razed a firecracker store in Iloilo after it was hit by lightning
- Investigators are currently checking if lightning was indeed the direct cause of the fire
- Damages were initially estimated at P300,000
A freak lightning strike is believed to have caused a fire that razed down a firecracker store in Iloilo City.
Witnesses saw a bolt of lightning hit the store located at Barangay Quezon in Arevalo district late in the afternoon of July 28.
The shop owned by a certain Liberato Abanilla, who is engaged in the buy and sell of firecrackers, immediately caught fire which spread to the rooms of an adjacent house.
A niece of the owner, Shamera Yap, who lived in another house next to the store, told ABS-CBN News that she heard an explosion and went out of her home only to see that the shop was already being razed. According to her, it took 20 minutes for firefighters to arrive and respond to the incident.
Based on its initial investigations, however, the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) is looking into the possibility that it was not the lightning bolt that was the direct cause of the fire.
As earlier reported by Iloilo News and Events, BFP Iloilo City Fire Superintendent Jerry Candido said if the lightning indeed caused the fire, the house itself would have been the first to be burned instead of the firecrackers and other items inside it.
According to Candido, it is possible that a short circuit occurred as aggravated by the lightning strike.
The BFP is still looking for the actual cause of the fire.
Initial estimate for damages is currently pegged to be at least P300,000.