House fires can happen to anyone at any time, but more often during the hot and dry season. In the Philippines, faulty electrical systems and cooking fires are some of the top causes of home fires.
Often, these incidents also result in significant property damage and even death. This is common, especially around the dry month starting in March, leading to its designation as the Fire Prevention Month.
However, house fires are preventable. Aside from having the knowledge and adequate preparation, choosing the right home can significantly reduce your risk of fire breakouts.
In this article, we will explore the causes of house fires in the Philippines and how to prevent them. Furthermore, we will dive into how well-planned homes like Camella keeps your family and property safe from fire emergencies.
Leading causes of house fires in the Philippines
House fires continue to devastate many homes in the Philippines every year and the numbers are still increasing. Just last year, the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) saw a 13% increase in fire incidents when the year opened.
But what causes most of these incidents?
Faulty electric wirings
Many incidents can arise from faulty electric wirings. One example of such is overloading from plugging in too many appliances and devices that result in overheating.
Another possibility is a short circuit, where a hot wire comes into contact with a neutral wire. The result is a surge of electricity that can start a spark and ignite nearby materials like curtains or upholstered furniture.
Additionally, faulty electric wires may overheat or spark due to damage as they wear over time. In other cases, an improper installation that does not follow codes such as wrong wire sizes or failing to secure wires may also result in fire.
But this is not limited to faulty wirings. In fact, even perfectly working appliances like portable space heaters or other heating equipment can cause fire when left unattended. With these, even a small flame can break out into a major fire.
Keep your home safe from faulty electric wiring by hiring a professional to check your electrical system, including plugs and appliances. Next, get rid of those damaged cords that may spark at any time.
Supposed you need to extend wires. In that case, avoid running extension cords under flammable materials like your carpets or rugs. And if your area is prone to electric surges, use voltage regulators to prevent overheating your devices and appliances.
Lastly, ensure fire safety first, especially on holidays. When buying Christmas Trees or any other artificial tree, always choose fire-resistant ones.
Cooking is a daily activity in many households. However, there are cases where simple frying or broiling food lead to a destructive house fire. Often, this happens to people who leave the kitchen while they are cooking. Other times, they result from spilling flammable liquids near heat sources.
In any case, leaving the kitchen for even a short period means you are not there to intervene should any accident occur. No matter how cautious you may be, things such as grease build-up, especially in stoves and ovens can start a fire and escalate quickly.
To avoid a cooking fire, try to stay in the kitchen while cooking. This way, you can intervene as soon as the smoke rises. Next, keep flammable objects away from the stove, and maintain kitchen appliances in good working condition.
When cooking, use the right equipment each time. Never put metals in the microwave and be careful with what you put inside the oven. Lastly, always keep a fire extinguisher ready in the kitchen.
LPG gas explosions
Another leading cause of house fires in the Philippines is the staple LPG (liquefied petroleum gas) tanks. As a highly combustible and flammable gas, people use them at home for cooking and heating. However, a leak from this tank and failure to store it properly can result in an explosion. Often, LPG gas explosions are dangerous not only to your kitchen but to your entire family home.
To avoid accidents with your LPG tank, regularly inspect your equipment from the pipes to the regulators. Next, always check for gas leaks. You can install a gas detector that sends a warning when gases go near dangerous levels. Alternatively, you can also manually check for leaks by covering the pipes with soapy water and checking for bubbles. Lastly, ensure that your gas cylinders are stored properly away from the heat sources and that the room has proper ventilation.
Cigarettes and candles
Cigarettes and candles are also notorious causes of house fires. Lit cigarettes that have not been put out before thrown risk igniting nearby items in the house. This is especially common for cigarettes discarded into combustible surfaces or left unattended in the ashtray. The best way to avoid this and keep your loved ones safe is to refrain from smoking altogether inside the room without enough ventilation and near the bed.
Additionally, unattended burning candles can start a devastating home fire. You can easily topple them over, which is dangerous near drapes, beddings, and other light materials.
Avoid fire emergencies due to cigarettes and candles by disallowing smoking inside the house. If that is unavoidable, ensure that the ashtrays are deep and made of fire-proof materials. As much as possible, avoid smoking in bed as a dropped cigarette could easily set fire to your bedding.
Be more cautious when handling candles around the house. Always place them on sturdy and heat-resistant surfaces out of the reach of children or pets. If possible, switch to safer alternatives like LEDs to use during power outages. Lastly, install smoke alarms and make it a routine to check if they are working in perfect condition.
Given all these, remember that it is not only fire that is dangerous. House fires may also come with poisonous smoke that could endanger you and your family worse than the fire itself. Keep your household safe and alert the fire department at the first signs of a fire incident for a proper response.
How Camella keeps you safe from home fires
Though fire incidents are often terrible, the good news is that they are preventable. And the best way you can do it is by choosing a well-constructed home in a master-planned community.
Developers like Camella for instance build your home and keep it up to date with modern safety standards, including the following:
Camella provides its homeowners the basic structural protections such as firewalls for most of its home offerings. These walls are made of fire-resistant materials that can withstand fire and smoke and slow down their spread within the parts of the house or across different units.
Up-to-code electrical system
Building a home in Camella means constructing a house with up-to-date electrical systems. This means that your home’s wirings are installed properly and that they are compliant with the latest safety standards.
Additionally, an up-to-code electrical system means your house has proper grounding to prevent shocks and fires. The same also applies to your switches, plugs, and other electrical components.
Lastly, Camella ensures that the materials used in your electrical systems at home are of the highest quality. From your wires to your switches, the developer only uses materials that have met the safety standards and can withstand the demands of daily use.
Smoke alarm system
Like most developers in the country, Camella’s home offerings come with a smoke alarm system. This continuously monitors the surroundings for smoke and provides an early warning during fire incidents.
Unlike most developers in the Philippines, however, Camella allows the integration of your smoke alarm alerts into your smart home system. This way, you can get live status alerts and distress updates even when you are not physically at home. With these, Camella keeps both your family and properties safe.
Here in Camella, you can rest well at home, knowing you are safe from fires and other natural disasters. Live life with peace of mind in Camella. Check our property catalog for your dream home selection.