Fire-prevention month 2023

BFP Cebu City: Collaboration, coordination needed in fire prevention   

CDN Digital March 01,2023 - 06:35 PM

fire prevention

Senior Fire Officer (SFO2) Wendell Villanueva, information officer of the Cebu City Fire Station answers questions from the media during the kick off of the Fire Prevention Month 2023 on March 1, 2023. CDN Digital Photo | Jessa Ngojo

CEBU CITY, Philippines—Cebuanos are reminded that they are not alone in the bid to prevent fire incidents in the city.

The fire bureau in the city gave this reminder as it opened this year’s Fire Prevention Month celebration on Wednesday, March 1, 2023.

This year’s theme is “Sa Pag-was sa Sunog, Di ka Nag-iisa.” It is a carryover of last year’s theme.

The theme intends to raise awareness among Cebuanos that in times of fire occurrences, they should not hesitate to call for aid, especially that there was a  increase of fire incidents noted in 2022 as COVID restrictions eased up in the city.

Senior Fire Officer (SFO2) Wendell Villanueva, information officer of the Cebu City Fire Station, assured the public  that they have the capability to respond to fires as long as they are called in as soon as possible. 

“Duna ta’y igong ehipo og duna tay igong hibalo sa unsaon pag responde sa ingun aning ng mga aspect. Naa gyud ta’y sistema kai kinahanglan na atoa jud syang ipahimutang. Dapat jud well-coordinated ang atong mga fire fighters ug rescuers ug sa atoang sakop sa EMS (emergency medical services),”  Villanueva said in an interview after a motorcade that kicked off Fire-Prevention Month on Wednesday morning.

(We have the equipment and the expertise to respond in that aspect. We have a system that we have to put in place. Firefighters should be well-coordinated with rescuers and personnel from the EMS.)

The motorcade ended at the Cebu Institute of Technology-University, where  fire simulation exercises and rescue operations were conducted and participated by students from the school.

The event was also attended by Superintendent Jesus Fernandez, Deputy Chief for Administration of the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP); and DILG Cluster head Michael Eltanal, among others.

Increase of fire incidents

According to data given by Cebu City Fire Office, in 2022, when establishments were permitted to accommodate guests at a 100 percent capacity due to alleviations from COVID-19 restrictions, 224 fire incidents were reported, resulting to P506,614,780 estimated damages. 

This is an increase from 2020 and 2021, wherein 192 and 203 cases of fires were reported, respectively.

Harold Alcontin, head of the Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO), who was also present during the event, said in his speech that it is necessary to advocate and raise awareness against the different impacts of fire.

“Makita ninyo sa Cebu City na grabe last year. Atong contact sa nasunog nahug og lima ka sitio (in Cebu City) around 800 houses almost 1,200 families. Dako kaayo og damage,” Alcontin said.

(You can see it was worse in Cebu City last year. Our contact of the fire was equivalent to five sub-villages, around 800 houses and almost 1,200 families. The damage was huge.)

Alcontin, thus, also reminded the public of the message of this year’s Fire Prevention Month.

“This year’s theme reminds us that this work alone cannot be done individually…’dili mag iya-iya’. With the right coordination, collaboration communication, and commitment we can achieve better results and less fire incidents with this year and the next coming years,” he said.  | Intern Jessa Sarnillo Ngojo



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TAGS: BFP, BFP-7, Cebu City Fire office, Cebu city news, Fire prevention month

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