Offices told: Ensure safety of city roads, buildings

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Sunday, February 9, 2014


BAGUIO City Mayor Mauricio Domogan recently directed concerned offices to ensure the upkeep of roads and city-owned buildings to prevent accidents and injuries in these infrastructures.

The mayor also tasked the City Engineering Office (CEO) and the City Buildings and Architecture Office (CBAO) to strictly implement the city ordinance requiring the restoration of excavations and other earth-moving works along roads, particularly provisions ensuring restitution works are appropriate and are of high quality.

The mayor took cue from the observation of City Legal officer Melchor Carlos Rabanes on the need to exert more effort to maintain the safety of roads and edifices in the light of a spate of accidents involving civilians and which are now the subject of court cases for negligence.

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Rabanes said it is difficult to defend the city in such cases and often end up in settlement.

He said the city must also do its share in maintaining national roads, adding the City is also to blame when accidents occur in these infrastructures even if under the care of the national government.

The mayor said the cases must serve as lessons to the CEO and the CBAO to improve their watch over the city’s infrastructure.

The mayor cited the recent case of a family from Makati City whose members were injured by broken glasses from a window in the Mines View multi-purpose building was shattered by strong winds.

Domogan said offices concerned came to the aid of the family and took care of their hospitalization and other needs until their departure.

“We know that what happened was an accident but whether we like it or not, we are liable to these cases and we should be responsible in ensuring that these are safe for all,” he said.

Vice Mayor Daniel Farinas said the problem on the city’s roads lies on the poor restoration works done by public utility companies undertaking diggings.

To address this, Domogan said the city must strictly impose the deposit requirement for the restoration works by ensuring the quality of the work done meets standards before allowing the contractors to withdraw the fees.

He said the concerned departments must also be strict in issuing certifications on the quality of the work done by ensuring first restoration work was not below par.

If after some time, the work turned out to be substandard, he said the City must use the provision on the period of guarantee that allows the city to go after the contractor even after some period had elapsed.

The restoration of diggings, excavations and other public works and constructions is mandated by Ordinance 41-88 and succeeding amendatory ordinances, the latest of which is Ordinance 79-96, which prescribes rules on the withdrawal of the deposit fees. (Aileen Refuerzo)

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on February 10, 2014.

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