Thursday, May 23 2013 @ 01:01 PM EDT
Contributed by: Staff_Journalist
The National Civil Protection System (SINAPROC), firefighters and municipalities constantly argue about the legal regulations and at the end, no one knows who is responsible for what.
Statistics from the Fire Department reveal that Panama, Colon and Chiriqui are on the top of the list regarding fire incidents. In 2012, 632 fires were reported in buildings, homes and commercial establishments. In the first quarter of the year, there were over 180 cases reported.
The SINAPROC director, Arturo Alvarado, said in several of these cases they have found that the safety standards are not being followed, especially in buildings.
He mentions, for example, in the “intelligent building” Global Bank there were serious problems at the beginning, which were then corrected. The lack of signs and double impact locks on doors that prevent the access of the rescuers are some of the issues. “The fire department and the SINAPROC should intervene when there is a complaint filed,” he said.
Alvarado said the responsibility falls on the Fire Department. “They are responsible for giving occupancy permits for residences, buildings or malls. But first must verify that all the security instruments and equipment are intact. Also, they must conduct annual or periodical inspections so there is no damage or to see if they have been replaced.”
The Lieutenant of the Firefighters, Eduardo Small, said “according to Law 10 that reorganizes the institution, the responsibility of fire prevention safety relies on each citizen or administrator.”
The buildings and shopping centers must have class ABC fire extinguishers, fire ceiling sprinklers, smoke detectors, fire hoses, evacuation signs, emergency stairs, but no one is certain about who must watch over this responsibility. (Estrella)