MANILA, Philippines (AP) _ Four Taiwanese officials of a toy company died in a fire early today at their factory in a Manila suburb.

The blaze started at 3:55 a.m. in the finishing section of the Mex Toy Industrial Co. Ltd., which makes stuffed toys, fire official Armando Custodio said.

Security guards tried to wake up Peter Kuo, the general manager, and three other officers of the company, who were sleeping in their quarters in the factory, and found their doors were locked, Custodio said.

The fire started in a storage area for highly flammable stuffing materials, he said.

It spread so rapidly that by the time the firemen arrived it had engulfed half the factory.

Cause of the fire was not known, Custodio said.