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The Philippines’ Most Damaging Fires and What We Can Learn from Them

Notifier Supplier Philippines | Fdas Philippines | Simplex Smoke Detector Philippines | Fire Alarm Philippines |

By: Shilonie E. Adoptante

  1. Manila Orphanage Fire (December 4, 1998 | Manila | Death Count: 28)

A “faulty electric wiring” was said to be the cause of fire at Bahay Kalinga. It was dawn of December 4 when the sleeping orphans were razed by fire.

  1. Marikina Wig Factory (January 22, 1975 | Marikina City | Death Count: 42)

The fire at this factory initially raged at the first floor trapping the workers at the upper floor. Unfortunately, the fire emergency exits were also consumed by flames. Many workers jumped off the building to save their lives, but tragically ended up dying after sustaining fatal injuries.

  1. Manor Hotel (August 18, 2001 | Quezon City | Death Count: 75)

This tragedy is the worst hotel fire in the Philippine history. The fire started at the third floor leaving most of the building covered with the suffocating smoke. Worse, the people could not escape through the windows because of the metal grills which is clearly a violation of the building safety standards and protocols.

  1. Kentext Manufacturing Fire (May 13, 2015 | Valenzuela | Death Count: 74)

According to reports, the fire broke out because of a spark of a welding project at the entrance of the factory. The spark started a fire instantly because of the chemicals and rubbers present at the shoe factory. The poisonous gas emitted by the fire spread quickly and killed many workers.

Since the building kept burning for 5 hours, the corpses turned into ashes. According to PNP chief Leonardo Espina, “Many of those retrieved were reduced to skulls and bones.”

  1. Ozone Disco (March 18, 1996 | Quezon City | Death Count: 160)

This tragedy is the 6th world’s worst nightclub fire. Survivors said that the fire started at the DJ’s booth where sparks were seen coming from it. Many people, mostly graduating students were roasted alive along with the smoke that suffocated them. It was because there was only one way out, given that the club was so crowded. The investigation reveals that the club violated some regulations.


Scanning through the nation’s history, fire incidents are products of overlooking a “small detail” of safety. Just like what a quote says, “Safety is always excessive until it is not enough.”. Investing for safety must not be treated as burdensome and waste of time and money for people. Investing for safety must be treated as a necessity for every establishment.

The mentioned fire incidents happened by accident. But unlike any other disasters, fire can be prevented. Fire prevention campaigns are rampant to inform people about ensuring safety.

Different practices and prevention tips were provided to minimize fire incidents. Different products were invented to alert people when there is a fire (smoke alarms, heat detectors, alarm bells, etc.). There were also products to stop a starting fire like fire sprinklers. Things were invented to minimize the risk brought by unwanted fires.

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