MANILA – March is Fire Prevention Month, but 4,725 fire incidents have already been recorded in the city as of March 18 – a far cry from last year’s 12,301 incidents, but enough for everyone to be made aware of what to do if and when one becomes a victim of fire.
Atom Araullo’s Red Alert, which aired on Friday at 4:45 p.m., did just that.
At the R.E.D. Training Center, Araullo showed televiewers what to do in case of a fire.
“Walang pinipiling tao, oras o lugar ang sakuna,” Araullo said.
A building at the center simulated conditions of a burning building, and with Araullo inside, he enumerated ways that could save a life – even your own.
Victims, he said, must remain calm and immediately alert family and neighbors.
“Kung malaki na ang apoy, pumunta na sa exit o labasan. Masakit sa mata at mahirap huminga pero kapag naipit sa nasusunog na gusali, gumapang papunta sa labasan,” he said.
Araullo said that according to experts, victims should never go to the bathroom to fetch water.
“Kahit sobrang init na ng paligid, ang payo ng mga eksperto, wag na wag kayo pupunta sa banyo para kumuha ng tubig. Malaki ang chance na ma-trap kayo doon at hindi na ma-rescue,” Araullo said.
“Ang unang dapat matutunan ay kung paano tumakbo papalayo sa apoy,” Dr. Ted Esguerra, Disaster Management lead of the Energy Development Corp., said. “Carbon monoxide, a byproduct of fire, can kill in minutes.”
Araullo reported that smoke and hot air tend to float, which would give victims 1 to 2 feet of “safety space” where clean air can still circulate.
“Pero hindi rin ito magtatagal so dapat mabilis ka kumilos,” he said.
Araullo also showed televiewers what to do in case you get trapped in a high building.
“Minsan, pag wala na mapuntahan, maiipit ka sa mataas na lugar. Kapag ganito, wala ka na magagawa kundi tumalon. Maaaring masakit, pero ito ang ikaliligtas ng iyong buhay,” he said.
And then, just like that, he jumped – and landed on an airbag.
“Bawat segundo mahalaga, dahil buhay mo ang nakataya,” he said.
The first responder to a fire is the community, because firefighters take about 5 to 7 minutes before arriving in a scene.
“Kung may mahabang hagdan sa komunidad, pwedeng ilagay sa bintana o balkonahe ng nasusunog na bahay para dito dumaan ang mga biktima na na-trap sa loob,” he said.
“Pwede rin magtulong-tulong para gawin ang bucket relay,” he added.
STOP, DROP AND ROLL
And what do you do in case your clothes catch on fire? Araullo said you should do the “stop, drop and roll.”
“Humiga sa sahig, magpagulong-gulong para ang oxygen mawala at maapula ang apoy,” he said.
Meanwhile, Chief Supt. Carlito Romero, OIC of the Bureau of Fire Protection, urges the public to remember the word SAFE:
- Sound the alarm
- Activate the fire brigade
- Fight the fire
- Evacuate the area