100-plus houses razed in fire

More than 100 houses and dozens of boats have been gutted after a fire broke out in southern Burma’s Tenasserim division on Tuesday.

The cost of the damage to Tha Bawt Seik village in Launglon township is expected to be significant: it is heavily reliant on fishing, and much of the razed infrastructure supported the industry. It is also close to the proposed site of a $US8 billion Thailand-backed port in nearby Tavoy [Dawei].

An official at the Tavoy local authority office said that “95 huts, three brick houses and 10 wooden houses…were destroyed. Apparently the fire started from a power generator but it is not confirmed yet”.

A Tha Bawt Seik resident said that victims of the fire were being given temporary shelter at monasteries, while locals had been donating aid.

“[Local residents] are going to the village to donate food and clothing to the victims. Some people lost all their fishing boats and equipment – their whole business.”

It comes little more than a week after an estimated 100 people died when an oil pipeline caught fire in Magwe division. That incident was followed quickly by a major fire in Kachin state’s Laiza which razed up to 200 shops.

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