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EDITH can save families during fires, practice it — Cebu City Fire Office exec

By: Pia Piquero - Multimedia Reporter - CDN Digital | December 14,2023 - 07:00 AM

EDITH and SAFE can save families during fires, practice them -- Cebu City Fire Office exec. In photo is SFO2 Wendell Villanueva, Information Officer of the Cebu City Fire Office (CCFO).

SFO2 Wendell Villanueva, Information Officer of the Cebu City Fire Office (CCFO), talks about the importance of using alternative noise-making methods during holiday celebrations to avoid accidents. | CDN Photo/ Pia Piquero

CEBU CITY, Philippines – The Cebu City Fire Office (CCFO) is urging the public to practice E.D.I.T.H at home, which stands for Exit Drill in the Home to prepare families to know how to react in case of a fire.

“Atong gihango atong mga ginikanan, in the event nga naay sunog na mahitabo in the community, makasiguro ta [nga] nga maluwas sila [pamilya] og mag EDITH sila,” the CCFO officer advised.

(We are appealing to our parents, in the event that there will be a fire in the community, they can be sure that their [family] will be saved if they will do EDITH.)

READ: Cebu City fires: Over 300 incidents, P4-billion worth of damages in 2023


SFO2 Wendell Villanueva, the Information Officer of CCFO, said that the drill would start by sitting down with your family and formulating a plan, which would involve detailing the necessary steps to take in the event of a fire occurring in your home.

“Kung mahimo atong silang e-monthly na drill sa balay, atong i-blindfold [kay] mura jud ug naay sunog. Why need blindfold? Kay during sunog naay baga na aso,” Villanueva said on Tuesday, December 12.

(If we can do an e-monthly drill, we will blindfold so that it will be like that a fire happened. Why need a blindfold? because during the fire there will be thick, black smoke.)

The blindfold drill holds significant importance, enabling families to familiarize themselves with their surroundings and evacuation routes, even in the presence of smoke during a fire.

Villanueva emphasized that teaching children to crawl would be crucial, as it would aid in oxygen intake and would help prevent suffocation during a fire.

“Ug atong tudloan atong mga kabataan og EDITH, especially sa pagkamang. Kanang aso dili mana modrop sa floor, one foot above the ground, there’s still a presence of oxygen. Mao na’y importance sa kamang kamang,” he said.

(And we will teach EDITH to our youth, especially in crawling. Smoke won’t drop to the floor, one foot above the ground, there’s still a presence of oxygen. That is the importance of crawling.)

Villanueva reminded the public, that in the event of a fire, they should refrain from attempting to return to the burning building.

He emphasized the importance of consolidating all essential documents into one easily accessible bag for swift evacuation.

READ: Mayor confirms arson in Minglanilla courthouse fire incident


Moreover, Villanueva highlighted that aside from practicing EDITH, people should also consider the SAFE protocol.

S – Sound the alarm; A – Advice to call the fire department; F – Fight the fire; and E – Evacuate.

According to Villanueva, in communities without fire alarms, people must alert others by shouting and promptly call the fire department.

“Unya na paglive, itawag sa na sa bombero. Ang uban excited kaayo maglive. Did you call the fire department?” he said.

(Don’t go live yet, call the firefighters first. Others are so excited to go live. Did you call the fire department?)

Villanueva said that the agency would actively conduct demonstrations in barangays, illustrating fire-fighting techniques, including the proper use of fire extinguishers and fetching water to suppress the fire after alerting the fire department.

He also underscored the significance of evacuating to a safer place in the event of a fire.

READ: Cebu hit by two huge fires in one day

Security conscious over fire conscious

Meanwhile, the fire officer mentioned that Filipinos are more security-conscious than fire-conscious, as exemplified by the common practice of installing iron grills on windows.

“Kaning pagput up nato og iron grills sa bintana kay mahadlok ta masudlan og akyat bahay, wala nato gihunahuna nga ang pagbutang og birha sa atong mga bintana, atong gibutang sa risgo ang mga kinabuhi sa mga sakop sa panimalay, if naay sunog, asa man mo muagi?,” Villanueva said.

(When you put iron grills in your windows because you fear being hit by akyat bahay, we did not think that by putting iron grills in the window, we are putting at risk the lives of the members of our home, if there will be a fire, where will you exit?)

Villanueva said that the tragic fire in Tisa, where four children lost their lives, should serve as a wake-up call that while installing iron grills might enhance security, it could also inadvertently turn homes into fire traps.

READ: TIMELINE: The deadly fire in Tisa where 4 children, including an infant, perished

More safety tips

Furthermore, he advised the public to adopt safety measures during the holiday season, including turning off the main breaker and checking the LPG before leaving the house.

“Make this a habit: Ayaw dayon pag pasiga og suga kay if adunay leak ang LPG, inig pasiga sa suga, mao nay trgering device na mobuto nuon,” said Villanueva.

(Make this a habit: Don’t turn on the lights immediately because if the LPG would have a leak, when you turn on the lights, then that would be the triggering device and there would be an explosion.)

He also urged people to refrain from using firecrackers or sky lanterns during holiday celebrations to prevent accidents.

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TAGS: EDITH, fire, SAFE, tips

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