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Cebu News

Cebu City Fire Office hopes BFP modernization will improve firefighting capability

Iris Hazel M. Mascardo - The Freeman
Cebu City Fire Office hopes BFP modernization will improve firefighting capability
SFO1 Wendell Villanueva, information officer of CCFO, said most of their equipment, including fire trucks, are already old.

CEBU, Philippines —  The Cebu City Fire Office (CCFO) has welcomed the recent approval by President Rodrigo Duterte of the Bureau of Fire (BFP) Modernization Law and hopes that this will already enhance the city’s firefighting capability.

SFO1 Wendell Villanueva, information officer of CCFO, said most of their equipment, including fire trucks, are already old.

“Panahon na sad siguro nga mupahuway na sila, ato na silang ibutang siguro sa dako-dako nga museum aron ilisan na sila sa bag-o, kay ato sad ihaom sa panahon,” said Villanueva.

Villanueva said they need high-rise building capability which they cannot do it with the old fire trucks. He said longer aerial ladders are needed since there are now more high-rise buildings in Cebu City.

The newly signed BFP Modernization Law is expected to address the much needed upgrade of the firefighting capability of the country’s fire department. Villanueva said the signing of the new law boosted their morale.

According to Villanueva, modernizing the BFP would be more cost-efficient than maintaining their outdated equipment.

“Nakita sa ahensya nga mas dako nuon og gasto nga mag-mantinir ta aning mga karaan nga firetrucks, nya atong ipa-repair kaysa mupalit ta og bag-o,” said Villanueva.

With the modernization law, the BFP could allocate funds from the income the agency generates through fire safety fees among others for the sole purpose of upgrading their fire rescue equipment. Villanueva said they are expecting that the BFP will be fully modernized by 2034.

Recently, the CCFO implemented the CCTV fire watcher which monitors the entire city to detect any possible fire alarm real time. This is also to ensure quicker response even without getting a call or report from a citizen.

Under the modernization program, firefighters are allowed to carry firearms for security while responding to fire emergencies.

According to Villanueva, this will help them in terms of security while they respond should an emergency situation particularly violence, might occur. — FPL (FREEMAN)

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