City on fire

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Wednesday, December 18, 2013


IN A span of five days, three fires broke out in five barangays in Cebu City, razing down 500 houses, killing a child and destroying some P3 million worth of property.

The common complaint of lack of access to these densely-populated areas remains.

Cebu City Mayor Mike Rama is embarking on a crucial project to re-block these communities to provide easy access to fire trucks.

Good. The problem is that it can only be done after a fire strikes.

***

Mayor Rama said he wants affected families to be back in their respective areas before Christmas.

They must have roofs over their heads by then.

With some help from the city government, these communities will surely rise again from the ashes.

***

Officials of the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) have urged the public to check their electrical connections and not to use substandard lighting fixtures and Christmas light to prevent fires.

Perhaps it’s time to teach people how to put out a fire before it spreads. Better still, equip sitios and barangays with fire extinguishers to control small fires.

It seems big fires can only be put out when there’s nothing more to burn.

***

Evacuees from super typhoon Yolanda-ravaged areas in Tacloban and Eastern Visayas have not moved to the tent city at the South Road Properties (SRP).

That should be easy to understand. The SRP is near the sea. These evacuees still have the phobia of surging seawater.

Worse, some of the tents now sit on water.

***

Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma said celebrating Christmas despite the tragedies is acceptable because this has been the tradition and a celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ.

“The presence of the Lord and the celebration of the masses are reminders that we have to go on because God is with us and we have each other,” His Grace said.

Celebrating Christmas is OK. Now, where’s Santa?

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on December 18, 2013.

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