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SOCO AT CU. Scene of the Crime Operatives (Soco) investigators arrive at the Capitol University to collect information about the fire at the university’s Art Gallery room that resulted in the death of two people yesterday. (PHOTO BY NITZ ARANCON)

Two workers die in CU’s art gallery fire


FIRE broke out at the Capitol University yesterday morning, killing two construction workers contracted to paint an art gallery.

SPO2 Jerome Diolanto of the Agora police said workers Bryan Solarte of Barangay Lapasan and Dave Marvin Ramoga of Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental, were burned beyond recognition.

The workers were painting the Art Gallery Room located at CU’s Academic Building 3 when the fire broke out at around 11 am.

CU workers acted quickly and prevented the fire from spreading further but they could not save Solarte and Ramoga.

The victims were workers under Teofilo Solarte who was contracted to re-paint the art gallery at the ground floor of the CU building. The gallery is near the University’s Museum of Three Cultures.

The fire prompted CU to suspend classes yesterday.

SFO2 Imelda Barasan of the fire bureau said there was no damage estimate yet. Diolanto however said the fire destroyed important collections like photographs and expensive paintings, among others.

Investigators have yet to determine the exact cause of the fire.

Chief Insp. Christian Caballes of the Scene of the Crime Investigation (Soco) said there was no sign of foul play.

He said the two workers were lying down near a door. They bore third degree burns all over and they were beyond recognition, he said.

“We cannot say why fire broke out but there were plenty of thinner cans inside the room,”  said Caballes.

He said Solarte and Ramoga likely passed out and then died of suffocation even before fire reached them.

“If they caught fire first, then they would have ran outside the room,” Caballes said.

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About Nitz Arancon

Nitz Arancon
Nitz Arancon started his career in the broadcast media. He worked as a cameraman for a news program of a local TV station, and subsequently became a reporter and later, commentator of the now defunct radio station DxJR.

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