Pandacan fire damage reaches ₱1.2 billion; welding work led to fire – San Miguel

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, February 27) — The fire that engulfed a packaging facility and a portion of the ongoing Skyway Stage 3 project caused more than a billion pesos in damage.

San Miguel Corporation (SMC) on Thursday disclosed that total damage to both the Skyway and San Miguel Yamamura Packaging Corporation was estimated at ₱ 1.2 billion.

Initial assessment by SMC showed that the fire affected 300 meters of the elevated road. It was supposed to open in March but the opening was pushed back to July for repair work.

“While this is an unfortunate setback, we have moved quickly to get back on track with the construction," said SMC president Ramon Ang. "We are working double time to deliver the entire Skyway stage 3 project in five months’ time or by July. This is just a three-month delay from the original target date of April 2020.”

Further, investigation by the Bureau of Fire Protection and the company revealed that the fire was caused by metal grinding and welding works.

SMC said that the fire started on coping beam 5 of the project, where workers of a sub-contractor were conducting “hot work.” Hot metal embers or welding slag apparently came into contact with cartons and other combustible materials in the warehouse.

SMC said fire investigators retrieved from the scene spent welding electrodes and a metal cutting disk or grinding tool, used by construction workers prior to the incident.

The Skyway Stage 3 is an 18.68-kilometer elevated road that would serve as an alternative to EDSA. It will connect North and South Luzon expressways.