December 1, 2023

With the start of classes, the city government once again intensified inspections of boarding and lodging houses in the city to ensure the health and safety of students.

The composite team on boarding houses led by the City Health Services Office through the Sanitation Division launched a surprise inspection last Aug. 15, which covered boarding houses, dormitories, and apartments at New Lucban, T. Alonzo, and ABCR barangays at random.

This was to determine if operators of these accommodation establishments are complying with rules on business permit, Building Code, Fire Safety and Sanitation Code for the health and safety of their boarders.

Those who are not complying were issued notices of violations and were given a month to meet all the requirements. Continued defiance will mean issuance of closure orders.

Based on results of the inspections, violations found were lack of business and building permits, lack or obstructed fire exits, insufficient fire extinguishers, insufficient trash bins, unsanitary condition of comfort rooms, hallways and rooms, inadequate lighting, vermin infestation, poor building maintenance, obstruction of hallways, rainwater pooling, poor grease trap disposal and maintenance, among others.

Some were also flagged for allowing smoking within their premises.

Sanitation Division Head Charles Bryan Carame said the inspection will be sustained in addition to random operations being conducted year-round by their office. Plans to do star ra-ting for compliant establishments will also be pursued.

The composite team was composed of the Public Order and Safety Division, Smoke-Free Unit, Sanitation Division, Population Division of the Health Services Office, Permits and Licensing Division City (PLD), Buildings and Architecture Office, City Environment and Parks Office, City Planning and Development Office, Bureau of Fire and Protection, and the office of Councilor Betty Lourdes Tabanda joined the inspection as the chair of the city council committee on health and sanitation, ecology, and environmental protection.

According to the PLD, the city has 31 dormitories; 21 lod-ging houses; 1,773 boarding houses; 1,398 apartments; and 543 transient houses listed in its registry of permitted establishments. – Aileen P. Refuerzo