The City Council is working on an ordinance that will require all establishments to have a public address (PA) system to guide the public during emergencies, as well as inform them the way to emergency exits.
The ordinance is set to be heard for second reading in next week’s regular session under the committee on peace and public safety under Councilor Maria Belen Acosta.
The PA system “will serve as an awareness tool in cases of emergencies where it could ultimately develop the people’s confidence and level of awareness regarding public safety and security,” the committee report stated.
With a letter of recommendation from Angel B. Sumagaysay, deputy head of the Public Safety and Security Command Center (PSSCC), the committee proposed the ordinance mandating a public safety and security announcement system for calamities or emergencies to be adopted by establishments in the city.
“Sumagaysay requested us to have an ordinance that will announce protocols, especially during large events,” Acosta told Times.
According to Acosta, the ordinance is most applicable during national events with attendees unfamiliar with the place.
“For example, in a convention center, not everybody is familiar about emergency exits. So before the start of the event, there will be a public announcement of the security through a PA system informing everybody the security protocols,” said Acosta.
“For locals also, if you can constantly hear the PA system, automatically, you will be able to know where to go during emergencies,” she added.
The PSSCC and the Office of the City Building Official will monitor the implementation of the ordinance once passed.
According to Acosta, each establishment will have a leeway to create their own PA system as long as they follow the guidelines of the ordinance. Based on the committee report, the PA system will be addressed at least once in the morning, once in the afternoon, and at least three times in the evening.