Man suffers burns in house fire, seven families made homeless

LABUAN (Bernama) – A man suffered burns on his hands as he attempted in vain to put out a fire early yesterday at his house that left seven families homeless.

The fire, which started at about 2am, destroyed the double-storey wooden house the families had been renting.

Labuan Fire & Rescue Department director Zainal Madasin said the operations room received a distress call at 2.42am and firefighters put out the blaze 30 minutes later.

None of the occupants, seven of whom are children, were able to salvage their belongings as the fire spread quickly.

One of the victims, Suwardi Alwi, 29, said he was on night-shift duty and rushed home to find the house already destroyed. His wife and three-year-old son are not in Labuan now.

“There was nothing left. Our clothes, electrical appliances all gone, including my Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) certificate and (other) documents,” he told Bernama.

Osman Lapannabu, 45, said he returned from work around 2am and was shocked to see the house on fire.

“My wife and two children, aged nine and 11, had rushed out. We managed to salvage only our documents. The clothes and other belongings were all destroyed,” he said.