Remonde salutes firefighters, volunteers for heroic deeds
Manila (6 August) -- Presidential Management Staff Secretary Cerge M. Remonde paid tribute to the country's firefighters and volunteers for saving lives and properties not only during fire but also during calamities.
Remonde, who graced the 17th anniversary rites of the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) recently, expressed the public's gratitude and admiration for the bravery of the firemen in their line of duty.
He said that as everybody's attention was focused on the Princess of the Stars tragedy, people overlooked the role members of the BFP played in rescue operations, including the distribution of relief goods and potable water to affected families.
Actually, the BFP has been providing the means to effectively deal with the threat of fire for over 100 years of courageous service, from Aug. 7, 1901, when the first Fire Department was established in Manila, Remonde said.
The 17th anniversary celebrates the signing of Republic Act No. 6975 and reconstitution of the fire service into the BFP in 1991, he added.
"The (BFP) record last year is impressive. While the number of incidents in 2007 was slightly higher than that of 2006 by some 219, the resulting property damage, loss of lives and injuries were significantly lower," he explained.
"In 2006, there were 686 deaths from 8,823 fires, as against 201 in 2007, from 9,042 incidents. This death rate, in fact, is the lowest in the last five years," Remonde added. (PIA-MMIO) [top]