A group of architects proposed measures which anyone, especially those living in areas like Metro Manila, can do to prevent destruction of their houses in event of calamities.
The architects gave the recommendations noting the effects of the powerful earthquake in Bohol and Cebu in October, and the onslaught of Super Typhoon Yolanda in the Visayas in November.
In a recent forum, officials of the United Architects of the Philippines (UAP) urged the public to have regular checks on parts of their houses which are most vulnerable to winds that could be equated to that of Yolanda’s, particularly the roof, windows and doors.
UAP suggested that house owners should check the roof for leakages and the gutters for blockages such as leaves and other wind-blown trash. Also, the group stressed that screws are better that nails to strengthen roofs of older homes with wooden trusses.
The group also showed that roofs with higher angles, usually 50-degree above, have high chances of surviving the powerful winds and heavy rains.
The architects also proposed that affixing plywood boards on the window frames could provide a layer of protection to prevent windows, especially glass ones, from shattering.
For the doors, the group added that locking mechanisms should be checked so that they would not fly open by strong winds. Glass doors must be reinforced with protection boards to avoid shattered pieces from scattering.
UAP also noted that the bathroom could be a good place to stay safe in the occurrence of calamities. The presence of water in the bathroom could make it an ideal room for refuge.
But, in the event that houses could not withstand any longer the power of either am earthquake or cyclone, evacuation to solid and stable buildings like schools and churches is the best option, according to the group.