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Sprinklers didn't work during Manila Pavilion fire, firefighters say

MANILA, Philippines – Sprinklers at the Waterfront Manila Pavilion Hotel & Casino did not work, according to firefighters deployed to the site of a fire which claimed the lives of at least 3 people and left 23 others injured.

"[Sprinklers did not work] based on the initial report of the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP)," Manila Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office chief Johnny Yu told Rappler in a text message on Sunday, March 18.

In an interview with DZRH, Yu added: "Kailangan pasukin ng ating bumbero using external, gamit [ang] hose sa labas, doon sila bumobomba sa loob. Kung sakaling gumana man 'yung sprinkler system hindi sana tayo aabot ng ganito katagal."

(Our firefighters had to use an external [water source], meaning a hose outside then they blasted water inside. Had the sprinklers functioned, it wouldn't have taken us this long to put out the fire.)

As of 10:30 pm, the BFP has not yet declared "fire out."

Yu added in the radio interview that the hotel has yet to submit to them a copy of its emergency plans in case of fire.

According to Yu, a business establishment like the Manila Pavilion would need to have the following plans, before being granted a business permit by the Manila City government:

– Rappler.com

Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers security, crime, and the city of Manila for Rappler. He was chosen as a Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.

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