2 dead as passenger bus catches fire in Quezon City
Two persons died after a bus caught fire in Barangay Greater Fairview, Quezon City on Sunday.
In an interview with reporters, Inspector Lyn Mercado, Fairview Fire Substation commander, said one of the passengers argued with the lady conductor while the bus was traveling along Pearl Drive, Commonwealth Avenue around 12:20 pm.
"Then (the passenger) threw a flammable material and used a lighter which caused the lady conductor to blaze," Mercado said.
Mercado said another victim was a male passenger whose charred body was found seated near the remains of the lady conductor at the front portion of the bus.
However, they cannot confirm if the other victim was the suspect in the incident.
In a separate interview, the bus driver, quoting one of the passengers, said the suspect was not able to escape the flaming bus.
"I don't know what they argue about... I don't know if that is gas or alcohol (that was used)... (The conductor) tried to escape but she was pulled by the (suspect)... I am not sure if he is the one seating there but according to the passenger, the one who flamed (the conductor) was not able to escape," he said.
Videos posted online showed that the passengers jumped through the windows on the last row of the bus to survive from the fire.
Meanwhile, a passenger said the alleged suspect was holding a small bottle when he attacked the lady conductor.
"There was a fist fight...the (suspect) was already throwing the (liquid in the bottle) while pushing the lady conductor in the front part, then all of a sudden there was fire," she said.
"She's still arguing with (the suspect) despite already on fire," she added.
The passenger said the suspect failed to escape as the flammable material he threw on the lady conductor also went on him.
Initial report from the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) said there were 20 passengers inside the bus when the incident transpired.
Aside from the casualties, four were reported injured.
The fire was put out around 1:20 pm.
BFP said the cost of damage was at P50,000 while no other vehicles or establishments were affected in the incident. Ella Dionisio/DMS