The online news portal of TV5
MANILA, Philippines - Fire incidents went down during the first four months of 2012 but the total cost of damages increased to over P1 billion, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) said Monday.
Figures from the DILG showed that nationwide fire incidents went down by 12.10% or 3,058 incidents from January to April this year, compared to 3,479 incidents during the same period last year.
Most of the fire incidents were accidental in nature, blamed mainly on faulty electrical connections and faulty appliances, spontaneous combustion, open flame due to unattended cooking stoves and unattended lighted cigarettes, among others.
Only 76 fire cases were intentional or arson, a 50% drop from 2011 figures. The Bureau of Fire Protection has filed 42 cases in various courts last 2011. However, only 21 cases have been filed so far for this year.
Despite of the decline in fire incidents, the DILG noted that the estimated cost of damages increase to P1.09 billion during the same period, 18.24% higher than 2011's P922.2 million.
The BFP reported that there were 83 civilian fatalities and 230 injured civilians for the first four months of 2012, a 6.57% drop from the reported 97 civilian fatalities and 238 injured for the same period last year.
The report does not cover the May 9 fire in Butuan City where 17 people where killed.
At present, the DILG and the BFP are addressing the problem of fire truck shortage. Out of the 1,500 towns, 666 more have no fire trucks and firemen, and lack necessary firefighting equipment.