VietNamNet Bridge – On the evening of March 5, an intense fire erupted at a shop selling incense and votive papers on Han Hai Nguyen Street in Ward 10, District 11, Ho Chi Minh City. Two people were injured while three unknown carbonized bodies were found.
At 10.20pm, the fire broke out on the ground floor of the house, where contained a lot of incense and votive products. There were six people in the house. Because the house was locked while the fire blocked the door so people could not get out. Some of them ran upstairs shouting for help.
Local people tried to put out the fire to save lives. “At that time, the families living around the house were about to go to bed. The fire broke out at the height of about 5 m. I and many others called each other to take fire-extinguishers and water buckets to put out the fire but the fire kept expanding. I ran up to the terrace to find ways to save people, but I could not do it before just in a few minutes, the fire and smoke covered everything”, Mr. Phung Huu Hung, 37, a neighbor said.
The house on fire consisted of a ground floor, a mezzanine, the second floor and a terrace, surrounded by multi-storey buildings.
People could not break the door on the ground floor so they climbed upstairs and used crowbars and many other objects to break the door on the second floor. While striving to put out the fire, Mr. Phong Phu Lay, 32, had his hand cut by glass.
Hundreds of fire-fighting police officers, local policemen and mobile policemen quickly arrived at the scene to rescue three from the fire. Two men who were suffocated by smoke were transferred to the hospital. The rest were still trapped inside.
Since the house contained too much incense and votive, it was difficult to stamp out the fire. Not until 2am of March 6, the fire was controlled. Rescuers found three bodies burned black on the mezzanine floor, including two men and one woman. As the family members did not cooperate with the police, the police should not determine the identity of the victims.
According to initial information, of the three bodies, two are the bodies of the house owners. Normally the house had 7 people, including the host couple, their son and maids. When fire broke out, the son was absent.