To showcase the skills and capabilities of women firefighters, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) through the Bureau of Fire Protection-National Capital Region (BFP-NCR) held an all-female firefighting competition recently at the Quirino Grandstand in Manila.
DILG Secretary Ismael ‘Mike’ D. Sueno said the annual competition, which is now on its second year, is one of the activities in observance of the Fire Prevention Month and National Women’s Month this March.
“Before, firefighting was an all-male profession. But now, women fight fire alongside their male counterparts. This event is our way of saying that female firefighters can do it like men do,” said Sueno.
The theme for this year’s Fire Prevention Month observance is “Buhay at Ari-Arian ay Pahalagahan, Ibayong Pag-iingat sa Sunog ay sa Sariling Pamamahay Simulan”.
BFP-NCR Director, F/SSupt. Wilberto Rico Neil Kwan Tiu said seven teams composed of 20 female personnel from the different fire districts and the BFP-NCR, competed in the tug-of-war, victim extrication, fire-ground rescue relay, toughest female firefighter, blitz attack, hose advance and rescue, and busted hose replacement to strengthen their skills.
Fire Insp. Alma Cassandra Gardose and FO1 Karen D. Cabute of Fire District III were named toughest female firefighters of the event.
Tiu said that for the whole duration of Fire Prevention Month, the weekly fire safety awareness campaign will continue wherein leaflets, posters and other information materials will be distributed in different areas of the metropolis.
Lectures on fire prevention, inspection of establishments, testing of fire hydrants, fire disaster emergency evacuation planning, fire drills, monitoring of all hazard operations, identification of fire prone areas and conduct of pre-fire planning to areas identified, and caravans will be intensified.
Now on its 51st year, the Fire Prevention Month is observed annually to strengthen the BFP’s relationship with the different sectors of the community and to encourage them to be partners in promoting and achieving a fire-safe and fire-free nation.