A fire in Siem Reap town’s Slakram commune on Saturday left one dead and several rental rooms damaged, police said yesterday.
Siem Reap town police chief Mok Sam On said that police suspected the blaze – which took seven fire engines to extinguish – was started by a burning cigarette butt in the home of the woman who was killed.
The woman, who was reputed to be an alcoholic, “had liver failure, so she could not move”, Sam On said.
“The authorities concluded that they could not find any cause of the blaze besides the cigarette filter,” he added.
Sam On identified the victim as Phorng Kem Prong, 40, who was known to neighbours for frequently arguing with her husband.
Villagers reported hearing an argument on the night of the fire, and shortly thereafter saw the flames coming from the victim’s room, but were unable to intervene.
The victim’s home, he added, was a zinc-roofed structure with cardboard walls, which allowed the fire to accelerate rapidly and spread to rental rooms in the vicinity and the wall of a nearby house.