A fire swept through Phnom Penh’s Russey Keo district Saturday night, destroying 23 houses in Kroal Kor village, local authorities said yesterday.
The fire, which began around midnight due to an electrical malfunction, took more than two hours to extinguish, but fortunately no one was injured by the flames, said Tak Ouk, village chief of Kroal Kor.
Flames ripped through the homes of a total 49 families, Ouk said, gutting houses, destroying most belongings, and leaving only a few charred remains of brick, wood and plaster.
“District police are now questioning the owner of the home from which the fire first came,” Ouk said.
Neth Vantha, director of the local firefighter office, said that authorities used 22 trucks to extinguish the blaze.
The burning homes’ location on a narrow road delayed the trucks from reaching the fire, and the firefighters’ efforts were further complicated by the flood of people rushing to escape the flames, Vantha said.
“I don’t know the scope of the damage yet, but authorities are investigating now,” he said.
The Ministry of Interior has identified electrical malfunctions as one of the key causes of fires in the country.
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