June 19, 2024

The Insider News

Direct from the source

Duke Frasco pushes for BFP, DILG to purchase firefighting helicopters

DEPUTY Speaker and Cebu 5th District Representative Vincent Franco “Duke” D. Frasco expresses his concern on the rapid increase in number of fire incidents in the country which already reached around twenty-five percent (25%) just in the first two months of 2024. 

For the past years, fire incidents have become a big problem in the Philippines. Among the most common challenges encountered while responding to such fires especially in densely populated and residential areas are the delayed arrival of firefighters due to severe traffic congestion and their difficulty in accessing the fire-affected and congested sites due to minimal and low upgrade firefighting gears, equipment, and vehicles. 

Taking cognizance of this issue, Rep. Duke Frasco filed House Resolution No. 1686 urging the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) and Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) to include in their FY2025 National Expenditure Program the purchase of firefighting helicopters. Rep. Frasco believes that a highly effective approach such as aerial firefighting is badly needed for faster and more efficient fire suppression operations. 

As the BFP is yet to be capacitated and equipped with the necessary resources for such, Rep. Duke Frasco pushes for the acquisition of the Bureau’s own firefighting helicopters in order to integrate this method in their operations without the need to depend on the availability of other entities such as the Philippine Air Force. 

In the House Resolution, Rep. Duke Frasco stresses the importance of capacitating the BFP and to ensure its responsiveness by upgrading the level of its fire protection services through measures including acquisition of new and modern equipment and vehicles such as firefighting helicopters. 

This is also in line with the BFP Modernization Program by virtue of Republic Act No. 11589, which gears towards the enhancement of the capability of its personnel and acquisition of the state-of-the-art fire prevention, fire supression, fire investigation, and emergency medical and rescue services facilities and equipment.

With House Resolution No. 1686, the Deputy Speaker hopes to further the efforts of the government in the enhancement and modernization of the BFP in order to fulfill its mandate of ensuring public safety through the prevention and suppression of all kinds of fires, with the active support of the community.