Dozens of passengers stuck onboard burning ferry in Philippines

Dozens of passengers leapt overboard from a burning ferry this afternoon (August 26) in the Philippines. Flames rippled through the vessel off the coast of Batangas province in the south of Luzon island shortly before sunset. The boat was carrying locals between islands in the archipelago. The Starlite Ferries vessel had reportedly travelled from Calapan City in Oriental Mindoro and was docking at the Batangas port in Batangas when it caught on fire. Batangas Port Manager Joselito Sinocruz said there were 40 people and 33 crew members on board, with some of them jumping overboard after the fire erupted. He added the Philippine Coast Guard, port police and civilians are at the scene to battle the inferno and rescue those in the sea. He said: "As of 6:20 pm local time, the fire is still large and ongoing on the Starlight Asia Pacific ship. We saw it burning around 5:30 pm". The number of casualties is not currently known.