Building code update proposed

BAYAN Muna Rep. Carlos Zarate expressed support for the call of Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano “for a very urgent need to update and revise the Marcos-era National Building Code.

Zarate made the call for building inspection by Local Government Units (LGUs) following a series of earthquakes in Mindanao.

Yesterday another powerful earthquake pounded Tulunan, Cotabato and other parts of Mindanao.

“Considering that the Philippines is in the so-called ‘Ring of Fire’, we are susceptible to earthquakes, thus, our buildings must be so designed with this reality in consideration,” Zarate said.

“Ang daming nasirang buildings sa Mindanao ngayon, lalo pa sa mga urban areas, tulad ng mga hotel, eskwelahan at mga condominium. Dapat talagang matsek kung matitibay ba ang mga ginamit na mga materyales dito at hindi mga substandard,” the progressive solon said.

The solon likewise underscored the need to investigate further real estate companies if they are really following rules of building code.

“Dapat na ring pag-aralan at ikonsidera ang possible regulation ng height ng mga buildings, especially since these quakes will apparently become the new normal. Mukhang di uubra ang mga high rise o medium rise buildings sa mga lugar na ito, katulad ng mga nagsulputang mga condominiums. Kawawa naman ang mga nag-invest sa kanila, lalo na ang mga OFWs,” he said.

Inspection of all buildings should be done for the whole country and not just in Mindanao.

Zarate proposed that structures in Metro Manila and around the metropolis especially those that are near the West Valley Fault should be inspected by structural engineers and reinforced.

“The new building code should also be designed to thwart corruption in the approval and inspecting of structures because lives are at stake and what happened to the buildings in Mindanao should not be repeated,” Zarate said.