Fire hits Port of Manila building
Fire engulfed the top two floors of the Bureau of Customs (BOC) Port of Manila building on Friday night.
The fire started at the third floor of building around 9 pm and was raised to fifth alarm at 10 pm, according to the Bureau of Fire Protection-Manila (BFP).
BFP declared fire out at 4 am Saturday. There were no reports of injuries and the extent of damage of the building was not known.
Senior Superintendent Jonas Silvano, Manila fire marshall, said in a telephone interview with the Daily Manila Shimbun the third and fourth floor of the building were gutted by the blaze
In a statement, Customs Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero said:'' the situation requires that we restore and re-establish systems and facilities that were destroyed by fire, at the soonest possible time for us to restore normal operations.''
Guerrero said the ''Internal Administration Group together with the Port of Manila has been tasked to submit an incident report to the Finance Secretary and the President.''
He said the Intelligence Group and the Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service have been tasked to identify the cause of the fire.
BOC spokesperson Erastus Austria said there will be no disruption of the port services. In a statement he said all affected offices, especially the Formal Entry Division, will temporarily continue its operations at the BOC Gymnasium.
More than 30 fire trucks were deployed to put out the fire which reached parts of the building where important documents were stored, the BOC said. Cristina Eloisa Baclig/DMS