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PA system approved | Establishments told to comply or face penalty

The City Council passed on final reading an ordinance mandating a public safety and security announcement system in establishments in the city.
Establishments include assembly establishments such as cinemas, conference rooms, places of worship, passenger stations and terminals; educational institutions such as schools, daycare facilities, libraries, and others; medical establishments like hospitals, laboratories, clinics, birth centers; and commercial establishments like malls, supermarkets, department stores, shopping centers, and others.
The installation of the announcement system covers all establishments with at least 2,790-square meter floor area.
The committee on public safety and security, led by Councilor Maria Belen Acosta, pushed for the passage of the ordinance during yesterday’s session.
Acosta told reporters that among the purposes of the ordinance is to heighten the awareness of locals and tourists particularly those who are not much familiar with the emergency areas of the establishment they are in.
“This public announcement system is not new. This has been done in other places outside of Davao city,” Acosta explained.
“Its purpose is to have an announcement of security protocols in case of emergencies, disasters, and others during big events in the city, especially those in the enclosed areas.”
Acosta also stated that they already consulted security forces and establishment operators for the coordination of the security announcement system.
“We will give information on the basic protocols but it will not hinder them from announcing their own security protocol because each establishments may have its own security design and protocol, emergency exits, and others,” said Acosta.
Acosta added that she is positive that with the increase of awareness of the public, lesser damages, injuries, and casualties is seen.
“It will heighten awareness. Once you are inside a mall and you hear the public announcement system, you will be directed where to go. During emergencies, it is inevitable to panic. But if this announcement system is aired on a regular basis, citizens will be able to comprehend the security protocol subconsciously,” Acosta said.
Owners of establishments that do not comply with the ordinance shall be fined P3,000 for first offense, P5,000 or imprisonment of three months at the discretion of the court, and P5,000 or imprisonment of six months at the discretion of the court and revocation of business permit.x

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