Begetting safety

VERBAL VARIETY - Annie Perez - The Freeman

This week's incidents are marred by safety issues. We opened with the death of a four-year-old from the 27th floor of a condominium building. The following days, we saw how a motorcycle driver and his passenger died after they hit a center island at the Cebu South Coastal Road and fell into the path of an SUV. Over in Moalboal town, a mini SUV rammed into a fast food joint hurting one customer. These are incidents that we often question why they have to happen. There is much risk with everything we do.

I came across a city disaster chief who once told me that there is risk every day. In our daily ordeals and actions, there is always an element of disaster waiting to happen. However, we can calculate these risks. We must take careful steps what to do next. This is why safety reminders are always important. They do not need to be downplayed on any occasion.

Take for example, the case of the toddler who fell out the window. There are many sentiments circulating about the case. This included sentiments on the part of the parent and the condominium structure itself. In fact, the Cebu City government conducted an ocular inspection and saw possible design flaws on the building. These are points that could have been mitigated before it was lived in.

The same sentiment can be said for the motorcycle incident. It is so easy for us to say that the motorcycle driver should have not sped up while traversing the South Road Properties. There are standards set such as speed limits. However, they are neglected. While there is no one to enforce these laws, constituents forget and go against it. By this time, another series of "had beens" are formulated.  Even for the case of the mini SUV that severely damaged part of a restaurant, there are also actions that could have been done before it happened.

The main characteristic of time is that it cannot be taken back. I'd like to believe that nothing can beat a focused and sharp mind when doing activities that may lead to accidents. My dad always used to remind me to have presence of mind, so I don't forget my valuables anywhere I go. I repeat this mantra until the end of the day. Nothing beats a sweet reminder.

Moving forward, the government for their part should also intensify the enforcement of safety standards. There is a reason why clearances, permits, and licenses have to be acquired. These are actions that we cannot do without prior approval given compliance. If only there is strict implementation that can't be bought by any amount or bribe, we are assured of being in a safe environment. Unless that trait is changed, we are bound to be on our toes every day in anticipation of any danger to arrive. We cannot control everything that happens. It is helpful to know the right response to mitigate any waiting disaster. At the end of the day, safety is what matters.

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