An electrical malfunction or a domestic dispute are believed the two likeliest scenarios behind a fire that burned down 10 houses in the capital’s Meanchey district early on Saturday night.
The fire lasted only about an hour, but necessitated nearly 20 fire trucks to quell the furious, rapidly spreading flames in Boeung Tompun commune’s Kbal Tomnob village, said Net Vantha, director of the Phnom Penh Municipal Police Fire Brigade.
A large number of bystanders and the buildings’ narrow separation made it difficult for fire-fighters to attack the flames, Vantha said.
“Because of congestion in every street, it was difficult for our forces to find a street to get in,” he said. “The blaze took 17 fire engines.”
Srey Moa, 21, who lives near the house where the fire started, said the smoke rising from the area at about 6pm on Saturday made her nervous.
“My house is about 100 metres away from the burning house,” Moa said.
Although Moa does not know the names of the people who live in the house, she said she often heard arguments emanating from the dwelling.
Boeung Tompun commune chief Sous Sarin could not be reached for comment.