‘Avoid contact between electric sockets, combustibles’
Research has shown that many fire outbreaks that occurred in homes and companies were as a result of direct contact between flammable objects and electric sockets.
According to the Weija Municipal Fire Officer, Mr Isaac Saah, research conducted by his department made the revelation, which he described as a dangerous practice.
“It is a major issue we are facing at Weija and its surrounding areas. Many homes and companies we visited to conduct fire safety checks had electric sockets close to either a gas cylinder or combustible material such as clothes or papers,” Mr Saah said in an interview with the Daily Graphic.
The interview followed a lecture on fire safety measures for operators of gas filling stations at Weija in Accra. Earlier, personnel from the Weija fire station had conducted a drill at a Chinese company, Home-Pro, to teach the staff basic ways of preventing fire outbreaks.
Mr Saah said many fire outbreaks that occurred in homes and manufacturing companies, for instance, could easily be avoided if basic fire safety measures were applied.
“If we can get the public to observe basic fire safety measures in their homes and workplaces, about 70 per cent of fire outbreaks in the country could be avoided,” he said.
Touching on ways companies could avoid needless fire outbreaks, Mr Saah said home and company owners must create an environment where there was no direct electric power contact with flammable materials or combustibles.
For instance, he said, many homes had their electricity power source under carpets or installed on walls that were only a few meters away from their wardrobe or bed.
“In some homes, we realised that curtains had been draped over electricity power sources to prevent children in the homes from having access to them,“ Mr Saah said.
According to him, such improper arrangement could easily lead to a fire outbreak in the event of a slight surge of power or fluctuations in power flow.
“That is why it is always dangerous to install electricity power sources in a room or space that has a gas cylinder or inflammable material,” Mr Saah added.
When asked about the current state of fire outbreaks at Weija and its surrounding areas, Mr Saah said there had been a drastic reduction in fire outbreaks this year compared to last year.
He said although the figures were not readily available, the situation was down by about 50 per cent.
Mr Saah attributed the reduction to ongoing fire safety education by all regional fire stations.