MANILA, Philippines — A ferry carrying 134 passengers and crew members caught fire near the coast of Real, Quezon early on Monday, where 127 people were rescued and 7 casualties were reported.
According to officials, MV Mercraft 2 left the port of Polillo Island at 5 a.m. with an estimated 124 passengers; it had a 186-person capacity. At around 6:30 a.m., the fire exploded through the ferry approximately 500 yards from the port of Real in Quezon province.
Another ship also arrived immediately to rescue the passengers who jumped into the water. Five women and 2 men were killed, while twenty-four others, including the captain of the ferry, were also injured in the incident.
The burned-out wreckage has now been towed to shore.
According to the Philippine Coast Guard, the fire seems to have formed in the engine room. The cause of the fire is still being determined.