Oliver Bugarin 3 0 0 4 min to read

Boarding houses in Baguio have been forced to address safety violations.

At least 15 boarding homes in the city have received orders from the local government to fix safety regulations that were broken, according to an inspection team.

The joint inspection team, led by Engr. Charles Carame, head of the Health Service Office’s sanitation division, relayed that several of the violations compromise the safety of the occupants, according to Aileen Refuerzo, chief city information officer, who spoke on the sidelines of Monday’s flag-raising ceremony.

According to her, “the majority of the boarding houses evaluated on September 11 had infractions on safety and sanitation criteria.”

The lack of solid waste management or distinct garbage cans for biodegradable and non-biodegradable wastes, outdated facilities, filthy surroundings, a lack of vermin control, and crowded places were among the infractions discovered.

The inspection team also found that there were no installed CCTV (closed circuit television) or emergency light and too narrow hallways. It obstructed entrance or exit due to being located within a waterway easement, improper drainage, a dilapidated roof gutter with a source of leaks, non-functional electrical fixtures, dangling electrical wires, busted lighting fixtures, unsafe electrical wirings, and obvious cracks on beams and columns.

The 15 boarding houses in New Lucban, Teodora Alonzo, and ABCR (A. Bonifacio, Caguioa, Rimando) have business licenses, but one of them lacked a fire safety certificate, according to Refuerzo.

The three listed neighborhoods are sought-after places for students to live since they are close to important universities and colleges, like the main campus of Saint Louis University, Baguio Central University, and STI College.

Refuerzo claimed that the inspection team also noticed that most dorms and boarding homes lacked parking spaces for residents and had malfunctioning fire alarms.

She stated that the team had decided to carry out surprise inspections in order to cover more barangays and ensure that the infractions of the 15 businesses would be corrected.

As decided by the task force members, the inspection will become a regular event, particularly with students returning to Baguio for their in-person classes, according to Refuerzo.

Refuerzo claimed that according to the Permits and Licensing Division’s directory of approved facilities, the city has 31 dorms, 21 lodging houses, 1,773 boarding houses, 1,398 apartments, and 543 transitory homes.

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