March 24, 2023

The rate of fire incidents in the Cordillera decreased in the last two years, according to the Bureau of Fire Protection.

Capt. Melchor Medes, BFP-Cordillera chief public information officer, said while this can be an indicator of increased fire prevention consciousness among the citizens, it however does not guarantee zero cases in the coming days.

Medes said the most fire incidents in the region were the result of human negligence.  Similarly, the intense heat of the summer encourages people to use more appliances leading to some fires being started by carelessly handling electronic equipment, ignorance and octopus wiring like extension cables connected to more extension cables instead of outlets. 

In addition to wildfires starting in a natural manner, trash burning and improper cigarette disposal also trigger some of these forest fires.

People are advised to unplug appliances before leaving their homes or, if possible, to switch off the main power breaker to prevent fires from happening.

“Avoid octopus wiring, replace rusty wires and limit plugging in too many powerful electronics into a single power strip,” Medes added.

The BFP also reminded residents that open burning of wastes is forbidden under Republic Act 9003 or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act thus it should be avoided to also prevent bushfires.

The BFP-Cordillera encouraged the public to take note of their local BFP hotlines and emergency numbers, which can be accessed easily on their respective Facebook pages, in case these still unexpectedly occur.

 In addition to the local response units and medical personnel, the BFP responds quickly and appropriately to various types of fires and provides all types of assistance in situations of crisis as one of the frontliners in the country.  – Grian Villanueva, Manette Agbunag, and         Janthrize Andanan