Girl dies in fire


ROXAS City — A 15-year-old girl died while her sister was injured when their house burned down early Wednesday here, officials said.

Fire Officer 2 Marlon Garbo, arson investigator of the Roxas City Bureau of Fire Protection, identified the fatality as Jacky Cabanya Pantallon, a third-year high school student at the Filamer Christian University.

Pantallon and other members of her family were asleep when their boarder, Rosalie Saryoso of Cuartero, sounded the alarm at about 2 a.m.

The victim’s elder sister Mary Jane, who attempted to rescue Jacky, sustained fifth-degree burns on the hand and body.

Their mother Marilyn, however, escaped unharmed.

Jacky was sleeping in her room on the second floor of the house, which was made of wood and had iron grills on the windows.

On the other hand, her mother and elder sister slept on the house’s ground floor.

The fire also razed an adjacent house owned by Andrie Baticados on Hemingway Street. Baticado’s house was also made of wood.

It took firemen and volunteers 30 minutes to put the fire under control.

The BFP had yet to determine the cause of the fire and estimated the damage at about P1.3 million.

Immediately, the city government through the instruction of Mayor Angel Alan Celino, conducted relief operation  to fire victims. It was led by city social welfare officer Lorelie Suelo and Executive Assistant Jericho Celino./PN

‘Brontispa’ infestation minimal – PCA chief


ROXAS City — Coconut farmers in the province should not worry about the recent beetle infestation that affected young coconut trees, particularly in Ivisan town.

Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) chief Jeffrey delos Reyes said the infestation of Brontispa longissima was minimal and will not affect much Capiz’s coconut industry.

The “infestation was on its early stage and the damages have no effect yet…,” delos Reyes stressed. 

About 1,000 coconut trees and 44 ornamental palm trees in Ivisan were attacked by what is also known as the coconut leaf beetle.

The infestation already reached Brgy. Agustin Navarra, six kilometers away from Barangays Poblacion Sur and Ondoy where the infestation was first detected last month.

About 700 nonbearing and 80 bearing coconut trees were infested by Brontispa in Brgy. Agustin Navarra, delos Reyes said.

Capiz has some 2.2 million coconut trees. About 1.4 million of these were on bearing stage.

Delos Reyes said the province is producing some 17,000 metric tons of copra worth about half a billion pesos.

Ivisan, on the other hand, has some 210,000 coconut trees; 146,000 of which were on bearing stage.
It is also the fourth coconut-producing town in Capiz, with Pilar as the first, followed by Sapian and President Roxas, delos Reyes added.

Tracing the history of coconut diseases, delos Reyes said the infestation was detected in nearby provinces of Aklan and Iloilo in 2006.

But with the help of concerned government agencies and other community sectors, it has been prevented from spreading in the province, he said.

It was on that year when palms trees in Boracay were hardly hit by the infestation, he said.

It was suspected that the pest was carried along with the palm trees bought by stakeholders from other provinces, he added./PN

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