BFP admits shortage of fire trucks and firefighters

admin   •   March 1, 2018   •   11051

FILE PHOTO: Some of the fire trucks of the Bureau of Fire Protection

MANILA, Philippines — The Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) continues to experience problems in terms of the number of firemen and fire trucks.

Three hundred municipalities have no fire trucks.

However, the BFP said that the government is already addressing the problem.

“Iyong P1-billion na ibinigay na additional fund ng ating presidente ay pambili natin ng aerial ladder, fire truck na tanker, iyong mga SCVA natin saka iyong ating mga personal protective equipment natin,” said fire bureau chief Director Leonardo Bañago.

(The P1-billion additional fund given by the president is for our purchase of aerial ladder, fire truck tanker, SCVA as well as personal protective equipment.)

The government targets to complete the needed number of fire trucks within three to five years.

The BFP is also now processing the hiring of 2,000 firemen this year.

Meanwhile, fire incidents have dropped last year.

Based on the data of BFP, the number of fire incidents in 2017 dropped by 26 percent compared to that of 2016.

Still, a major cause of fire incidents are faulty electricity lines.

“Iyong mga bahay-bahay kasi na iyan, hindi na natin na-iinspeksyon iyan. Kaya kayo mismo, iyong mga ating kababayan mismo, sila na mismo ‘yong mag-conduct ng pagsisiyasat sa kani-kaniyang mga tahanan para makita kung iyong mga maaaring pagmulan ng mga sunog,” said the BFP chief.

(We do not get to inspect houses anymore. That’s why each household should conduct their own inspection to check for potential fire hazards.)

Meanwhile, BFP’s event on Thursday featured a simulation exercise on how to respond in the event a magnitude 7.2 earthquake or the “Big One” hits the country.

The event is part of the fire prevention month which kicked of this year.

The fire prevention month is being celebrated every March.

During the said event, the BFP conducts various campaigns to remind the public on how to avoid fire, especially during summer months.

The UNTV News and Rescue team also joined the fire prevention month rally of the BFP.

The agency also ended the program with a unity dance and a colorful fire truck shower. — Joan Nano | UNTV News & Rescue

 

Senate OKs bill seeking BFP modernization

Robie de Guzman   •   March 9, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Senate has approved on third and final reading a bill seeking to strengthen the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) by providing modern firefighting tools and life-saving equipment, additional personnel, and relevant training of personnel.

Voting 23-0, the Senate passed on Monday Senate Bill No. (SBN) 1832 or the BFP Modernization Act, which aims to help the BFP pursue its mandate of promoting public safety by saving lives and protecting property in times of emergencies.

Sen. Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa, who chairs of the Senate committee on public order and dangerous drugs and sponsor of the measure, said that the proposed measure will ensure that the BFP will be well-quipped and sufficiently manned to suppress fire incidents and respond to calamities.

“With the help of SBN 1832, we can ensure that we will have enough fire officers, fire trucks, personal protective equipment and other equipment needed to suppress deadly fires. Also, it will allow BFP to effectively perform their duty as first responders during accidents and other emergencies,” Dela Rosa said in a statement.

The bill expanded BFP’s functions to include prevention and suppression of fire in all buildings, houses, and other structures located inside economic zones, agro-industrial economic zones, free ports, and special economic zones, Information Technology (IT) parks/centers, tourism economic zones, and other similar entities.

Added to the agency’s functions is its duty to respond to natural and man-made disasters and assist in rescue and emergency medical services provided that the BFP would coordinate and cooperate with the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council and Local Government Units.

The modernization program shall consist of components, such as fire protection service, force restructuring and organizational development, capability, material, and technology development, specialized services development, and human resource development.

“Again, with the help of Congress, our dream to have firetrucks and fire stations in every municipality could be achieved; hopefully, we can see firefighters with protective equipment while suppressing deadly fires; no more stories of fatalities due to lack of ambulances during accidents and emergencies,” Dela Rosa said.

Dela Rosa assured the public that the higher chamber will appropriate proper funding for the modernization of the BFP.

“The passage of this bill is the first step towards the modernization of the BFP. Rest assured that we will see to it that this law will be implemented properly,” he said.

“We will also ensure that our annual national budget will include sufficient funds for the programmed projects of the BFP for their modernization program,” he added.

Mag-lola patay sa sunog sa Mandaluyong City

Aileen Cerrudo   •   February 18, 2021

Patay ang mag-lola sa sunog sa Barangay Addition Hills sa Mandaluyong City madaling araw ng Huwebes, ika-18 ng Pebrero.

Nabulabog ang mga residente ng Block 39, Barangay Addition Hills nang sumiklab ang apoy sa isang bahay pasado alas-12 ng madaling araw.

Batay sa ulat ng Bureau of Fire Protection, dalawang bahay ang naapektuhan ng sunog na umabot sa first alarm. Agad ring naapula ang sunog matapos ang isang oras.

Ngunit kinumpirma ng BFP na dalawang indibiduwal ang nasawi matapos maipit sa loob ng nasunog na bahay. Kinilala ang mga biktima na sina Pacita Lamac, 55-taong gulang, at apo nitong si Althea Monique Salumbides, 13-taong gulang.

Ayon kay Barangay Captain Carlito Cernal, nasa third floor ang mag-lola nang sumiklab ang apoy sa katabing bahay nito na unang nasunog. Gawa sa light materials ang bahay ng pamilya Lamac kaya mabilis na kumalat ang apoy.

“Sadly, hindi nakalabas kasi ang sabi doon sa mga nakakakilala sa pamilya na ang ibang hagdanan masikip din, at iyon nga mabilis ang apoy kasi nga puro light materials ang kanilang tinitirhan,” aniya.

Wala nang iba pang napaulat na nasugatan sa insidente. Inaalam pa ng BFP ang sanhi ng sunog bagaman nakita umano ng ilang residente na may usok mula sa likuran ng isa sa mga apektadong bahay.

Kasalukuyan nang tinutulungan ng lokal na pamahalaan ang nasa 10 pamilyang naapektuhan ng sunog. (Ulat ni Asher Cadapan Jr.)

2 dead, over 20 hospitalized due to ammonia leak at Navotas ice plant

Aileen Cerrudo   •   February 4, 2021

NAVOTAS, Philippines—Two people have died while over 20 others are still recovering after being exposed to an ammonia leak at an ice plant in Navotas City on Wednesday evening (February 3).

Navotas City Mayor Toby Tiangco, in a tweet, confirmed the identity of the second casualty. The body of Joselito Jazareno, 54, was found on Thursday (February 4). Jazareno worked as an electrician at T.P. Marcelo Ice Plant.

The first reported casualty, Gilbert Tiangco, passed away on Wednesday.

Out of 99 individuals that were rushed to the hospital, only 26 are still recovering at the Philippine General Hospital.  

Tiangco also said the company vowed to provide assistance to the victims of the incident.

Meanwhile, the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) is looking into the possible cause of the leak. One possible cause, according to BFP-NCR Director FCSupt. Gilbert Dolot, is high pressure from welding activities which triggered the explosion of an ammonia-filled nurse tank at the ice plant.

However, Dolot said the BFP cannot fully conduct an investigation yet since its personnel cannot enter the premises due to high toxicity.

“Our team cannot do the investigation right away now sa ating site dahil malakas pa iyong level ng toxicity ng ammonia,” he said.

He assured that the BFP will immediately begin investigation once the area is safe. AAC

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