Food sector nixes fire suppression system

RESTAURANT and food service establishments in Davao City are asking the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) not to require the installation of an automatic kitchen hood fire suppression system.

Under Section 10 of the Republic Act 9514 or the Fire Code of the Philippines of 2008, it was stated that the “cooking equipment shall be protected by automatic kitchen hood fire suppression.”

This is in accordance with NFPA 96, Standard for Ventilation Control and Fire Protection of Commercial Cooking Operations.

However, the Restaurant Owners Association of Davao City (ROADC), the Davao Tourism Association (DATA), the Davao Region Tourism Council, the Davao Baker’s Club, Inc., and the Tourism Council of Davao City all formed together to request the BFP to review and amend Sec. of the Implementing Rules and Regulations of RA 9514.

According to their signed statement, they found the suppression system to be “both unnecessary and expensive.”

The joint petition requests that the automatic kitchen food fire suppression system in restaurants and bakeshops that are stand-alone should be made optional rather than mandatory. Stand-alone restaurants and bakeshops are not connected to common exhausts ducts such as those restaurants and bakeshops located in malls.

Two years ago, in 2016 when the group first requested for the amendment, there was a recorded 535 registered restaurants in Davao City. Out of this number, only 70 restaurants are stand-alone and about 13 percent of this had installed fire suppression system in their kitchen.

Now as the number of restaurants in the city had ballooned to more than 800, they believe that the fire suppression system should still be made optional.

Senior Fire Officer 2 earlier said the number of fire incidents involving business establishments in the city has only slightly increased to 50 incidents in 2017 from 49 incidents in 2016.

In 2016, there were eight fire incidents that happened in industrial establishments, 17 in mercantile, 16 in business, and eight in storage establishments or warehouses. By 2017, there fire incidents for industrial establishments had gone up to 14 incidents, mercantile with 19 fire incidents and businesses still with 16 incidents, while storage/warehouse still with eight fire incidents.


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