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Monday, September 23 2019 @ 03:11 am EDT

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SINAPROC Warns - Don't Go To The Beach This Weekend

Safety & SecurityThe National Civil Protection System (SINAPROC) of Panama recommended yesterday, Tuesday, 3 April 2012, that people should be aware of pending high tides. On 6 April 2012, Good Friday, at 3:22 pm a high tide of 16.7 feet will be recorded along Panama's Pacific coast. The Director General of SINAPROC, Arturo Alvarado, suggested that people should "not use the beaches on Saturday 7 April, and Sunday 8 April 2012" because these high tides will also coincide with strong waves. He recommended that anyone using Panama's beaches during Holy Week should take all possible precautionary measures, primarily to keep an eye on children, because high tides mixed with heavy wave action can bring consequences that are extremely dangerous. He also said the public should follow the instructions of the SINAPROC staff and lifeguards that will be on duty during this Easter weekend. The tides on the Pacific will reach up to 17.8 feet. (Estrella)

Editor's Comment: You can see in the graph the tides will be peaking at 4:09 pm on Saturday, 7 April, and at 4:57 pm on Sunday, 8 April 2012. Holy Week in Panama pretty much starts tomorrow, and is the last real vacation time which marks the end of the "summer" months in Panama. As usual, everyone will head to the interior starting tomorrow and stay through Sunday. Some people will be going to church services, but most just take the time as a vacation. If you want to drink buy your booze now because there will probably be some kind of "dry" law in effect for this weekend, as usual.

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Welder Electrocuted in Chiriqui While Working On His Grandfather's House

Safety & SecurityJorge Javier Rodriguez, 30, died Wednesday afternoon, electrocuted while he was doing welding work on his grandfather's house in the community of Retorno in the village of David, in the Chiriqui province. Witnesses said Rodriguez received an electric shock and was thrown to the ground. He was transported to the emergency room of the Rafael Hernández hospital, however upon arrival the doctors said he had died. When relatives of the deceased reached the hospital they could not accept what had happened to their family member. Police officers went to the scene, as well as the DIJ, Criminology, and officials from the Prosecutor's Office, who recovered the body. (Dia a Dia)
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Buildings More Than Seven Stories Require A Fire Department Rescue Strategy

Safety & Security"There is a limitation from the physical point of view of a fire truck," said Horacio Robles, an engineer and the president of the Panamanian Society of Engineers and Architects (SPIA), who said the ladder of the fire trucks of the Fire Department of Panama only have the capacity to reach the seventh floor of a building. The construction of new buildings in excess of 7 stories or 23 meters high, is evident in the city, so the Distinguished Fire Brigade of the Republic of Panama (BCBRP), must create a strategy that allows them to perform a rescue in case of any emergency in a structure that exceeds this level.

"They used ropes and platforms, or they will come up with the pressure hose to control the fire, ventilate, and proceed to the rescue," said Capt. Eladio Rojas, head of the Division of Safety and Fire Prevention of the BCBRP. According to the head of the Security Division, buildings with over 7 floors are classified as "self sufficient", ie they have necessary safety equipment in an emergency such as fire hoses, sprinklers, reserve water tanks, fire alarms, stairs, and fire extinguishers. Meanwhile, Robles catalogs buildings over 23 meters high as "self defended" also must be built under the Human Security standard, meaning they are endowed with stairs and fire walls, that allow people to evacuate in time. Robles recognized that in Panama nor elsewhere in the world, the ladders of a fire truck cannot extend beyond that height.

Permits - According to the president of the SPIA, in order for the office of Municipal Engineering and the Fire Department to issue an occupancy permit for a building, the buildings must have met the standard of Human Security, mentioned above, and they must consider that the buildings are in compliance with the measures and requirements.

Meanwhile Captain Eladio Rojas told the Panama America that firefighters should give "the nod" to buildings, granting a certificate stating that they have the minimum security measures to prevent fires. The standard Human Security was established since 2006, according to the president of the SPIA. (Panama America)

Editor's Comment: Having the standards in place is one thing. Inspecting and enforcing those standards is something else. Fortunately there has not yet been a tragic or dramatic high rise fire in Panama City - yet.

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SINAPROC Searching For Two Lost Tourists on Volcan Baru

Safety & SecurityBy DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - TVN is reporting that officials from Panama's National Civil Protection System (SINAPROC) are searching for two tourists who are lost somewhere on Volcán Barú, in the province of Chiriqui. According to TVN, SINAPROC is predicting they will locate the lost tourists sometime during the hours of darkness tonight.

Copyright 2012 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

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Apartment Fire in Barraza This Morning

Safety & SecurityApparently an electrical short caused the fire in apartment 4F of building 8 in Barraza, which was consumed by flames. The incident occurred at about 10:00 am this morning. The apartment was inhabited by Mrs. Martina Rodriguez, 78, who fortunately managed to get out on time with her two grandchildren, and the three were unharmed in this incident. Approximately 60% of the apartment was burned up, losing important documents and most material things. (Telemetro)
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Already 2,775 Grass Fires This Year

Safety & SecuritySo far this year the Fire Department of Panama has already responded to 2,775 grass fires, which has kept them on alert. According to Paul Tuñon, the Director of the organization, last year they responded to about the same number of fires, but during the entire 12 months of the year. Although people can be fined from $50 dollars to $5,000 dollars (for starting a grass fire), people ignore these sanctions and the situation is getting worse. Among the provinces with the most cases are; Panama, Chiriqui, and Los Santos. (Dia a Dia)

Editor's Comment: Every year there are widespread grass fires during the dry season. If the dry grass does not burn off, then the fuel can accumulate over two or three years, and when it finally does go up (and it will eventually) then it's just a larger and hotter fire. Sometimes it might be better to just let it burn off. In a couple of months when the rainy season starts the grass will grow back, don't worry.

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Fire In Multimoda Store in Chitre Last Night

Safety & SecurityMembers of the Security Office of the Fire Department conducted an inspection at the Multimoda store, located on Central Avenue in Chitre, Herrera Province, where was a fire last night. Firefighters are trying to determine what were the causes of the fire that consumed 70% of the structure, that started in the warehouse. Firefighting units from different areas were able to extinguish the fire after midnight in the midst of difficulties with the supply of water and mechanical damage in the hydrants. Losses are estimated at $70,000 dollars. (Critica)

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Underground Explosion Injures Two on Via Israel

Safety & SecurityTwo people were inured after an underground explosion blew a manhole cover into a vehicle on Via Israel, in front of the Justo Arosemena Institute, this Thursday, March 8. The System of Emergency Management 911 reported the two patients were taken initially to the Santo Tomas Hospital, but did not specify the medical condition of the individuals. Meanwhile, Roberto Ballesteros, a spokesman for National Air Service (Senan), told TVN News that the injured were taken from the Santo Tomas hospital to the Paitilla hospital. Those injured are SENAN Lieutenant Roger Luque and his wife, said Ballesteros. Ambulances from the 911 service arrived at the scene, as well as a fire truck from the Fire Department of Panama. Investigations have already begun into this incident. (Prensa)

Editor's Comment: So there was an underground explosion, which blew the manhole cover into the vehicle, and two were injured. Man, talk about being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Underground explosions? Flying manhole covers?

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13 Year Old Found Drowned At La Pacora Beach in Anton

Safety & SecurityThe body of Joaquín Valdés, 13, who has been missing since Monday, was found drowned near the La Pacora beach in the Guías de Oriente, in Anton, Cocle province. A group of fishermen in the area decided to search for the child, however, he was found dead. The victim went on Monday with his older brother to the La Pacora beach in the Guías de Oriente, in Anton, in order to go fishing. The child was sleeping with his brother in small fishermen's house near the beach, but mysteriously be disappeared at about eleven pm on Monday night, and despite the search efforts of this brother and the other fishermen they never found him. The victim was in eighth grade in school, and he never had any problems with conduct. (Critica)

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Apartment Fire in Obarrio This Afternoon

Safety & SecurityBy DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - There was a fire this afternoon in one of the bedrooms of Apartment 21C in the relatively new "Sophia" apartment building, located on Calle 54 in the Obarrio neighborhood of Panama City. Neighbors saw smoke coming out of the apartment and notified the fire department, and residents reported that the fire alarm never activated. The Office of Safety and Security of the Fire Department is conducting an investigation to determine the cause and origin of this fire.

Copyright 2012 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

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Reports On Grass Fires in Chiriqui So Far This Year

Safety & SecurityThe National Environmental Authority reported that about 453 hectares of grassland and stubble have been consumed by fire within the Volcan Baru park and areas close to La Amistad International Park in the province of Chiriqui. However, the figures from the Fire Department of Chiriqui contrast. They say so far this year about 1,000 hectares have been consumed by flames. The fire with the greatest impact occurred on 13 February 2012 in the Volcan Baru park, which was fought by more than 210 people, including firefighters, park rangers and environmentalists, among volunteers. (Dia a Dia)

Editor's Comment: Tis the season. As the dry season continues all of that grassland just gets drier and drier every day. Sooner or later something starts a fire and then it all goes up.

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Manslaughter Charges Filed Against Tropigas Director of Human Resources

Safety & SecurityThe Tenth Circuit Prosecutor brought manslaughter charges against the Director of Human Resources of the company Tropigas for the deaths of five people in an explosion in the PH Metric apartment building. The technicians of the gas company, the building's administrator, and the person who sold the gas hot water heater to the apartment's owners have also been named as defendants in this case. The prosecutor also filed a motion to suspend the inquiry against three of the company's executives. The explosion killed Magda Rodríguez, the owner of the apartment, as well as Celeste Martínez, Alberto Castro, Luis Cedeño and Carlos González. (Panama America)

Editor's Comment: Question: How can a Director of Human Resources be responsible for manslaughter in a case involving a gas explosion? Maybe she hired someone who was not qualified to be doing the work? I don't know, just speculation on my part, but it sounds a little strange on the surface.

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More Details on El Chorrillo Fire

Safety & SecurityOne person died and dozens were left homeless due to a fire that occurred last night at 7:25 pm in building number 20-30 of Calle 21 in El Chorrillo, which took several hours to be extinguished by the Fire Department Panama. The deceased was identified as Alaliles Muñóz, 58, who had a disabled leg, and he was unable to leave his room once the alert of a fire was sounded. Of the 58 people who were identified as being left homeless at the time of the fire, 26 are children and 3 are infants. The flames emanating from building number 20-30 extended to the neighboring building, called "La Bodeguita" (building No. 20-36), which was also damaged by the water used by firefighters to put out the initial fire.

Those affected by the fire called for the Minister of Housing, Jose Domingo Arias, to go to the scene, and they want the MIVOT to rebuild their homes in the same place, and they say they went to the authorities several months ago asking for "preventative solutions."

Paul Tunon, commander of the Fire Department of the capital said he is waiting for the arrival of his staff, from the Legal Office and from the National Directorate of Security, Fire Prevention and Investigation (Dinasepi) to advance research on the origin of the fire, and he did not rule out the possibility that the fire might have been caused by illegal electrical connections that exceed the flow of electric charge. (Panama America)

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One Killed, 107 Left Homeless by El Chorrillo Fire Last Night

Safety & Security The Mayor of Panama held this Monday, Feb. 20, a census of the people who were living in the wooden barracks No. 20-30, in the neighborhood of El Chorrillo in Panama City, which caught fire last night. One person was killed in the fire. In total, 107 people were left homeless because the old wooden building was consumed entirely by flames, said Catibel Franco, the General Secretary of the office of the Mayor of Panama City. The fire, which began at 7:25 pm according to the Fire Department of Panama, also affected the property next door known as La Bodeguita (building No. 20-36). Franco said the homeless would not accept being transferred to the gym of the Lions Club, located on 5th of May Plaza, so they built a temporary shelter in front of where they lived in El Chorrillo. Officials from the Ministry of Housing and Land Management (Miviot) also went to the site to analyze the situation, and to evaluate courses of action to take to help the victims. (Prensa)
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Man Electrocuted in Cativá, Colon

Safety & SecurityA man was electrocuted in Cativá, province of Colon. Early reports indicate the victim was trying to steal some copper wires carrying high voltage when he was electrocuted. This incident was reported in abandoned building. The authorities proceeded to initiate investigations and recover the body. (Critica)
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Grass Fires Everywhere in Panama Today

Safety & SecurityBy DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - I'm going to spare you the details, but today the Twitter-sphere is alive with reports of grass fires, basically everywhere. All of the Fire Department sectors are reporting fires near roadways, heavy smoke in areas, a new fire has been reported, one was put out, responding here, going there, etc. Just be aware that it's grass fire season in Panama, so head's up.

Copyright 2012 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

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Grass Fire Causes Nighttime Panic in Ancon

Safety & SecurityPanic seized the residents of the community of San Francisco in Guna Nega, Ancon on Monday night when there was a large grass fire nearby. According to residents, the incident occurred at about 9:00 pm, the fire spread to a residential area adjacent to the sector. They immediately called the fire department, but the fire department did not respond. Seeing that the fire was advancing and the houses in the area are built out of wood, residents dug trenches in the ground to stop the advance of the flames. The Public Relations office of the Fire Department said they had no record of the fire being reported. (Siglo)

Editor's Comment: There is a big risk of grass fires during the dry season in Panama. All of that grass grows like crazy all year long, with lots of water and sunshine. Then when the dry season hits it gets no rain for months, and by now it's as dry as kindling. Fires start easily and spread quickly.

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You Could Be Fined If You Use A Fire Hydrant During Carnival

Safety & SecurityThe authorities of the National Institute of Aqueducts and Sewers (IDAAN) and the Distinguished Fire Brigade of the Republic of Panama (BCBRP) announced prohibitions on the opening of fire hydrants during carnival celebrations. IDAAN Director Abdiel Cano said only the fire department has the authority to open fire hydrants in case of fire emergencies. The Director General of the BCBRP Pablo Tuñon said they have always worked closely with the IDAAN, and citizens need to avoid obstructing hydrants. That could lead to sanctions by the on duty Justice of the Peace. Both officials urged the public to preserve the security measures in the care of fire hydrants and to keep the way clear to ensure adequate service. In order to file a report or to lodge a complaint, you can call the IDAAN hotline at 311 or dial 103 for the Fire Department. So far this year there have been three forest fires and 566 grass fires. (Critica)

Editor's Comment: So, if you were planning on opening up your local fire hydrant down on the corner so you could dance in the street and play in the water during carnival, don't do it, because you'll get in trouble.

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Forest Fire in Volcan Baru National Park Under Control

Safety & SecurityThis afternoon the forest fire that consumed more than 100 hectares of savannahs and forests within the boundaries of the Volcan Baru National Park in Cerro Punta, Chiriqui Highlands, was entirely controlled. Gonzalo Chang, Chief of the Fire Department in Bugaba, said the constantly changing and very strong winds caused a delay in bringing the fire under control, which was fought together by the Fire Department, SINAPROC, ANAM, environmentalists, and local farmers. Some 50 officials and volunteers participated in extinguishing the fire. The forest fire near the protected areas of Volcan Baru National Park in Paso Ancho, Bugaba was reported on Tuesday morning, 14 February 2012, by the National Police and the Fire Department of Cerro Punta. The fire moved at high speed toward the forest zone of the protected areas in Cerro Muleto and Cerro Aguacate, increasing the danger that it might impact areas of the park where it would be more difficult to control. The National Environmental Authority initiated investigations to determine the factors that caused the fire. Some say it was rabbit hunters who left a fire burning. This is the second recorded forest fire in this dry season in areas close to protected areas. The first occurred in early February on the slopes of the volcano in Paso Ancho, affecting much of the forest near the Volcan Baru National Park and was controlled by the ANAM rangers, environmentalists, and units of the Fire Department. (TVN)

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Forest Fire Near Volcan Baru National Park in Chiriqui

Safety & SecurityA forest fire near the protected areas of the Volcan Baru National Park (PNBV) in Paso Ancho, Bugaba was reported on the morning of Tuesday, 14 February 2012, by the National Police and the Fire Department of Cerro Punta, Chiriqui. "The fire is advancing at great speed towards the forest area of ​the ​protected areas in Cerro Muleto and Cerro Aguacate," said Salvador Martinez, a resident of Cerro Punta, when he was contacted by TVN. About one hundred hectares of savannah belonging to a Spanish businessman has been consumed by the fire, which then spread to the property of another resident. Firefighters are attempting to control the fire right now, and to keep the flames from reaching the protected areas. This is the second recorded forest fire in this dry season in areas close to protected areas. The first was recorded in early February on the slopes of the volcano in Paso Ancho, affecting much of the forest near the PNVB and was controlled by the ANAM rangers, environmentalists and Fire Department units. (TVN)
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Fire By Southern Corridor

Safety & SecurityBy DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - Received just now via email: "(subject: fire next to corredor sur - just past costa del este towards the city) hi don. my daughter took this picture about an hour ago - not sure what is going on, but maybe you do? keep up the EXCELLENT work! stephanie."

Update: Via the Southern Corridor Twitter account: "The fire is in the access area at the start of the over water section of the road towards Paitilla. The fire department is on the scene."

Editor's Comment: Sort of looks like a trash fire that someone lit down under the bridge by the high water line. Also, we're now well into the dry season, so the grass fires should be starting any time now. Anyway, thanks for the info and photo. If I see or hear anything else I'll put it up.

Copyright 2012 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

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Woman On A Bicycle Narrowly Escapes Getting Crushed By A Truck, And The Cops Give HER a Ticket

Safety & SecurityBy DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - Received via email this morning: "Don, My cunada has a friend who works in the free zone. Yesterday when she went to lunch she was almost crushed by a semi truck. When she went to get on her bicycle after getting her food, a truck struck and crushed her bicycle, while she trying to get on it to go back to work no less. She fortunately kept her wits enough to roll out of the path of the tires, but ended up underneath the vehicle. She saved herself by grabbing on to some chains under the trailer and held herself up. The driver didn't realize he had hit someone and continued on. He only stopped after enough people started screaming to get his attention. The real bite in the ass in this happened when the police showed up. They gave HER a ticket for operating a bicycle without a license. I remember seeing it listed as one you could get when I went to get my drivers license. At the time I thought it was some dumb thing to have as needing a license. I guess that it is one of those things that is your "bonus" prize when the cops want to write you up but don't have a clue as to what to charge you with. Still, it seems pretty low to give someone who just narrowly escaped death a ticket for something this trivial."

Editor's Comment: Amazing. Nothing surprises me here anymore.

Copyright 2012 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

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Fire Destroys Old Wooden Building in Pueblo Nuevo

Safety & SecurityBy DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - There was a fire early this evening in an old wooden building on 6th Street in Pueblo Nuevo. The building was completely consumed by flames, and power is out in the area.

Copyright 2011 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

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Man Dies Due To Burns Sustained In Gas Explosion on Ave Balboa

Safety & SecurityMr. Francisco Salazar, one of the four people who were injured in an gas explosion in the newly constructed "White" apartment building on Ave Balboa, died on Monday due to the severe burns he suffered on 25 January 2012. Salazar, who was hospitalized in the Burn Unit of the Santo Tomas hospital in Panama City, went with this partner David David Velásquez to the 21st floor to install a hot water heater, however luck was not on their side that day. The announcement was made ​​at a news conference by officials from the Santo Tomas hospital, where Velásquez remains hospitalized. The doctors remain hopeful that the second person can recover. (Estrella)

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Two Men Crushed To Death, Two Injured, When Backhoe Flips At Job Site

Safety & SecurityTwo men who were working for the company Asfaltos Panameños were killed yesterday morning in Salamanca, province of Colón, as they prepared to begin their work of building the road to the community Santo Domingo. The two laborers, along with other comrades, came down a hill on a backhoe, which lost control. The workers remained trapped under the heavy machinery, so it was necessary to use a tractor to lift the machine and remove the bodies of those who were killed as well as the survivors, who were immediately taken to the hospital. The victims were identified as Miguel Santana, 35, and Anibal Alvarado, while Esteban Sanjur and Adolfo Girón remain in delicate condition. The shock could be seen in the faces of the comrades of those involved in this accident, and there were those who could not control their tears when they saw them in that condition, and when they had to face their family members with the news. (Siglo)

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Apartment Fire in Paitilla

Safety & SecurityA fire broke out on the 34th floor of the Vista Marina apartment building, located in Paitilla. According to Lt. Iran Ponce Iran, of the Fire Investigation Division of the Fire Department of Panama, a wooden cabinet located close to a built in oven caught fire, which produced a cloud of smoke that was seen by the authorities, who called the fire department at 12:34 pm this afternoon. Ponce said the employees and one of the owners was present in the apartment at the time, and the fire was caused by cooking on the stove. (Panama America)

Editor's Comment: You should have several fire extinguishers in your apartment - one or two in the kitchen, and a really big sucker in your bedroom, just in case you wake up in the middle of the night to find your living room fully engaged. You might be able to knock it down enough to get to the door.

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Three People Drowned Over The Weekend

Safety & SecurityThe National Civil Protection System (SINAPROC) reported three people drowned yesterday, Sunday 29 January 2012. The first report given by the SINAPROC Communications Center, was in the Balneario Las Mendoza, Penonomé, where a 7 year old child who was out with his family, died by drowning. Another of the victims was a 42 year old man who was intoxicated at lake Vigia in the province of Colon. While in the third case was a man 60 year old man from the community of La Cascada in Caimitillo. The Director of the SINAPROC Arturo Alvarado recommends that everyone who will enjoy the summer months on the beaches, rivers, and lakes around the country to be very careful when swimming. He said "if you are not familiar with the area always watch your children. Alcohol consumption can affect your senses and limit your ability to react, which can be fatal in the water, and it's better to avoid accidents than be sorry." SINAPROC clears the beaches they protect at 5:00 pm. Anyone who swims after that time is at your own risk, said Alvarado. (Estrella)

Editor's Comment: After traffic accidents, incidents involving water are probably the most dangerous situations for foreigners, expats, and tourists in Panama.

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Fuel Tanker Truck Catches Fire, Almost Explodes on Northern Corridor

Safety & SecurityThe truck of a tanker carrying fuel caught fire on the Northern Corridor, affecting much of the exterior of the tank. Although the incident occurred at about 2:45 am early Saturday morning, the vehicle remains blocking one of the traffic lanes in the direction towards the province of Colon, near the exit of Tinajitas. Fire Department personnel remain in the area. Drivers report a massive traffic jam. (Telemetro)

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Report Says "Gas Leak" Caused Explosion on Balboa Ave.

Safety & SecurityA gas leak that occurred when workers were installing or connecting a gas water heater caused the explosion on the 21st floor of the White building White, located on Balboa Avenue, on Wednesday January 25, reported the Fire Department of Panama. In a press release the Fire Department said at approximately 5:20 pm an explosion occurred resulting in four injuries, two of them with severe burns. Major Carlos Rodriguez, the National Director of Security, Fire Prevention and Investigation of the Fire Department of the Republic of Panama, said the investigation is ongoing by the Auxiliary Prosecutor jointly with the Directorate responsible for determining responsibility, and thus far they have not permitted the occupation of the building where the explosion occurred for safety reasons. There are still fire investigators working in the area. Major Rodriguez stressed the need to only use personnel who have been previously trained and certified by the Fire Department to install connections of this nature to avoid unfortunate situations. (Estrella)

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Explosion in "White" Building on Ave Balboa

Safety & SecurityBy DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - This afternoon at 5:45 pm there was a gas explosion in the newly constructed "White" building on Ave. Balboa. Three workers were installing a gas water heater and were injured as a result of the exceptionally strong gas explosion. The windows of apartment number 21 were blown out. Parts and pieces of the window frames landed in the street, and some of the cars that were parked in the Coastal Strip were damaged by flying debris. The three injured workers and the elderly woman who is the owner of the apartment were taken to the Santo Tomas hospital for treatment.

Brand New Building: The "White" building has more than 60 stories with three apartments per floor. So far only about ten families have moved in. It is located just past the BBVA Building, close to the Parque Urraca.

Traffic Chaos In Panama City: The National Police have blocked off the Coastal Strip to allow the Fire Department and emergency responders to do their jobs. There is still debris and glass scattered all over the road. Ave. Balboa, Calle 50, and the Northern Corridor are all completely jammed up. The authorities are asking people to stay home and not use their cars unless it's absolutely necessary, and to avoid blocking intersections. Also, at 8:00 pm tonight the United States is playing Panama at the Rommel Fernandez stadium, and that's also not helping the traffic situation.

Copyright 2012 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

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