By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
The Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) in Bacolod City was alarmed over a string of fire incidents that struck the city this month.
In a radio interview yesterday morning, BFP-Bacolod Fire Marshal, Chief Inspector Stephen Jardeleza, said they have recorded 16 fire incidents this month — nine were caused by electrical issues, while one was caused by a leaking butane canister.
The blaze in Barangay 1 last December 23 was caused by a butane canister explosion, Jardeleza said.
He reminded the public that a butane canister can only be used once, and should never be refilled by unregistered refilling stations or dealers.
Based on records from the city government and BFP-Bacolod, there are no registered refilling stations for butane canisters in the city.
However, only one manufacturer has been tagged as an authorized dealer.
In response to the BFP’s findings, the Business Permits and Licensing Office, together with the City Legal Office, conducted a surprise inspection of market stalls selling butane canisters at the Burgos Public Market yesterday morning.
The stalls selling butane canisters were issued with notices of violation.
Several illegal butane canisters were seized by city officials.
Meanwhile, the Bacolod Public Information Office also posted a reminder on social media that the unauthorized selling and refilling of butane canisters is punishable with a fine amounting to P3,000 to P5,000, based on City Ordinance 885, series of 2019.
Under the said ordinance, the use of butane canisters is only limited for outdoor use, and it is not advisable to refill the containers for safety reasons.
On Tuesday, December 26, at least 117 residents of the city’s Purok Paghidaet in Barangay 29 were displaced following a blaze which left at least P1.8 million in damages.
Two other fire incidents also took place over the Christmas weekend, causing hundreds of thousands of pesos in damages.
There were no reported injuries or fatalities in all fire incidents./DGB, WDJ