MANILA – A Filipino is presumed dead in the wildfire currently engulfing North California’s wine county, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said Tuesday.
The Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco reported to the DFA that the Filipino’s remains, which have yet to be positively identified, were recovered on October 14 in Napa County.
Deputy Consul General Jaime Ramon Ascalon said the Consulate General had been in touch with the victim’s family and had offered assistance, especially in coordinating arrangements for the repatriation of the victim’s remains.
“We also continue to communicate with the Filipino community through our social media advisories, and have offered consular assistance to Filipinos affected by the wildfires,” he said.
DFA Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano expressed condolences to the family of the Filipino presumed to have perished in the wildfire.
“I have instructed our Consulate General in San Francisco to offer all possible assistance to the family and to continue to closely monitor the welfare of other Filipinos in the affected areas,” he said in a statement.
More than 10,000 firefighters are currently battling 16 large wildfires that have burned more than 86,600 hectares.
The fires have destroyed 5,700 structures and have claimed at least 40 lives.
About 100,000 people have been evacuated from the fires.
There are an estimated 13,500 Filipinos living in the Napa, Sonoma and Yuba counties, which are the areas most affected by the wildfires.
An estimated 4,200 Filipinos live in the other affected counties of Lake, Marin and Mendocino. (PNA)