Manila: A massive fire gutted the Manila Central Post Office early Monday, May 22, 2023.
The Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) has raised the highest fire alarm level, after flames erupted in the iconic 1946-era building fronted by Roman columns.
A postal staff member was quoted by local media as claiming that they woke up to thick, black smoke, and called the fire department for assistance.
According to the preliminary report from the BFP National Capital Region, Task Force Delta received the call at 5.25am on Monday.
The BFP declared the fire under control as of 7:22 am local time (3.22 am UAE).
At least 36 firetrucks responded to the call. It was thought that the basement was where the fire began, which quickly spread to the upper floors, the Manila-based ABS-CBN channel reported.
The maintenance room and the storage room for the Mega Manila Office are located on the south side of the basement, where the fire originated, according to Mark Laurente, chief of staff for the postmaster general. There were also materials made of wood and paper in the area, he said.
A man identified as Toto Roslin, 43, reportedly suffered a slight cut to his right hand.
The management of the Manila Central Post Office is still unable to establish whether the building's letters and packages were destroyed by the fire.
The Manila Central Post Office Building, the center of the Philippine postal services and the headquarters of then-Bureau of Posts, was completed in 1926. It was destroyed during World War II (1945) but was rebuilt in 1946, after the war.