Gov't vows 'scientific' probe on Serendra blast

Kim Arveen Patria
Kim Arveen Patria
Yahoo! Southeast Asia Newsroom

Investigators looking into the Friday blast at a residential unit in Two Serendra in Taguig have narrowed down their probe to determine the cause of the explosion, a Cabinet official said.

Interior Secretary Mar Roxas on Sunday said probers are focusing their efforts on the "blast site" after scouring through the "crime scene", which included the street where portions of concrete fell after the explosion.

“Police and fire authorities have thoroughly sifted through the debris scattered at the street portion and concluded the gathering of forensic evidence there,” Roxas said in a statement.

Three persons were killed and five others were injured when the blast ripped through the Unit 501 of the posh condominium complex Friday, blowing off slabs of concrete which crushed a truck in the street below.

All three casualties in the blast were in the delivery truck. Meanwhile, the unit’s occupant, identified as Angelito San Juan, suffered burns and was rushed to the nearby St. Luke’s Medical Center.

Another resident and two passersby have also been injured and brought to the hospital, while another passerby was treated for trauma.

Probers who have inspected the debris noted that “no positive traces” of bomb chemicals have been found, even as he noted that all possible angles are being considered.

Investigators have meanwhile begun taking statements from the building's third and third and fifth floors occupants in an attempt to establish a “narrative timeline” or the sequence of events, Roxas said.

Initial findings said San Juan was on his way out of the unit he was renting when the explosion took place. He had complained to the building administrator that he was “suffocating” inside the apartment.

Police evacuated residents of the building and two adjacent buildings and turned utilities in aa probe that Roxas promised would be “scientific.” Roxas earlier asked the public to avoid speculating on the incident.

“We are using science and the knowledge of the different government agencies, including the Army’s explosives unit, for us to find out what happened and take steps to prevent this from happening again,” Roxas said.

He said the government “wants to ensure the safety of everyone and to determine, on instructions of the President, what really happened.”