15 dead, 12 injured in Philippines hotel fire

Updated: 2010-12-20 17:24


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A fire tore through a budget hotel, rousing some guests and trapping others in upper floor bathrooms on Sunday in the northern Philippines.

Many of the 15 dead and 12 injured were nursing students in town to take a licensing exam, police said.

Some firefighters wept and prayed as they retrieved badly burned bodies. Grieving relatives converged at a morgue where remains of victims, 14 burned beyond recognition, were brought.

Some fainted as body bags were brought into a funeral parlor.

"Their families spent fortunes to send these children to school only to see them end that way," fire investigator Daniel Abana said.

The fire raged for eight hours early on Sunday and gutted the five-story Bed and Breakfast Pension House in Cagayan province's capital of Tuguegarao city, about 350 km north of Manila.

Dozens of guests, roused by the commotion, were rescued by firefighters and police or reached safety on their own, Abana said.

Many of the dead had crammed in bathrooms on the top two floors. One victim had a foot stuck out of a window in a desperate attempt to survive, he said.

At least 12 nursing students were taken to hospitals with minor burns.

The building was still smoldering when firefighters broke in and scrambled to search for the 15 victims, police said.

A nursing college instructor, Romeo Opido, told police that about 36 nursing students were at the hotel.

The dead included three children who may have been members of the family that owned the hotel and who stayed in some of its rooms, Abana said.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

15 dead, 12 injured in Philippines hotel fire

About the broadcaster:

15 dead, 12 injured in Philippines hotel fire

Nelly Min is an editor at China Daily with more than 10 years of experience as a newspaper editor and photographer. She has worked at major newspapers in the U.S., including the Los Angeles Times and the Detroit Free Press. She is also fluent in Korean.


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