Residents can do their bit to prevent fire accidents

Published: Sat 15 Jun 2019, 8:31 PM

Last updated: Sat 15 Jun 2019, 10:32 PM

Human lives are very precious. We are fortunate to be in a country where the civil defense department is well equipped and is the best in dealing all kinds of emergencies, but a little care from the residents can go a long way in minimising the number of emergencies in the country.
I have been in the UAE for over three decades and worked in fire-related services in various capacities: right from being a firefighter to a Fire Officer and head of the section.
I feel residents can play a crucial role in keeping communities safe by taking basic housekeeping precautions.
For instance, home appliances should be switched off when not in use. And when we are planning a long vacation, it is always advisable to turn off the power supply before leaving. Residents should also inform the building maintenance to shut the water supply while they are away.
Such precautions will definitely save money, and also help prevent accidents. Often a spark or a short circuit causes fire in houses, which if not spotted and contained in time can spread and cause major emergencies.
Firefighters should be a part of the security teams in high-rise buildings. I request the authorities to mandate it and ensure there are at least three to four professional firefighters with security background in each high-rise building. All existing complexes in Abu Dhabi, such as the Marina Square Gate Tower, should induct a team of firefighters as their security staff.
Buildings also should have full fire gears and minimum two SCBA with at least six spare cylinders to allow the team of firefighters to take the initiative until civil defense arrives.
Lastly, a word on the fire alarm. I understand some of them are false and it can be annoying, but residents should never disregard these alarms. They should acquaint themselves with the evacuation plan provided by their community office.
Our life is our responsibility.
Arvind Dhumale, Abu Dhabi

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