by Staff Writers
Sydney (AFP) Sept 25, 2017
Ten people believed to be Chinese died when a supermarket caught fire in Papua New Guinea while they were sleeping, reports and officials said Monday.
The disaster at the Splendid Star shop was made worse by the lack of any proper fire-fighting equipment in Manus province in the impoverished Pacific nation's north, where the blaze started early Friday.
The dead included six women and four men.
Manus provincial police commander Chief Inspector David Yapu said the fire in Lorengau town quickly engulfed the building, trapping the 10 inside.
"The fire spread out quickly to the other parts of the supermarket and into the bedrooms where the 10 were sleeping," Yapu told The National newspaper.
"The six females and four males were trapped in the building and burnt to death."
The cause of the fire is not known.
Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said in Beijing that the supermarket was run by Chinese nationals and said 10 were missing.
"There was a fire in a supermarket run by Chinese nationals in Papua New Guinea. Ten Chinese employees are missing," said Lu. "So far we have found four bodies at the scene."
The PNG Post Courier newspaper said the remains were burned beyond recognition and DNA samples were being taken to the capital Port Moresby to identify them.
But it said some of the dead had children back home in China.
According to The National, Manus does not have a fire truck or any firemen and although police were quickly at the scene, they were helpless.
"This is an outstanding issue that appropriate government agencies must address," Yapu said.
"We need a fire service in our province. We have to protect our families and our homes from fires too."
6.0-magnitude quake hits off Papua New Guinea
The tremor hit at a depth of five kilometres (three miles) near the sparsely-populated East New Britain region, some 210 kilometres southeast of the town of Kokopo, the USGS said.
The Hawaii-based Pacific Tsunami Warning Center did not issue a tsunami warning.
Earthquakes are common near Papua New Guinea, which lies on the 4,000-kilometre-long Pacific Australia plate.
It forms part of the "Ring of Fire", a hotspot for seismic activity due to friction between tectonic plates.
Lisbon (AFP) Sept 12, 2017
A Portuguese former firefighter has been sentenced to 12 and a half years in prison for having started forest fires in central Portugal last year, a regional court announced Tuesday. He was found guilty of arson for igniting nine fires between July and September 2016 in the Castelo Branco region with its forests of eucalyptus trees, which are particularly flammable. The biggest blaze in ... read more
Forest and Wild Fires - News, Science and Technology
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|