Saturday, August 13

20 pct drop in emergency calls last year — KL Bomba chief


KUALA LUMPUR: The Kuala Lumpur Fire and Rescue Department received 3,515 emergency calls last year, especially cases involving fire, compared with 4,218 calls received in 2011 or a 20 per cent drop.

Its director Khirudin Drahman said the drop showed that the people were aware of the need to prevent fire and ability to
control incidents that may lead to fire.

“We made an analysis and comparison in 2011 and subsequently launched more campaigns and programmes to create awareness and teach the people to be cautious because prevention is better than being sorry after losing belongings during a fire.

“The results have been satisfactory and seen a drop in the number of fire cases. We have also taught people how to react when there is a fire,” he told Bernama.

Khirudin said the community (people) are the first line of defence in preventing or putting out fires.

“If there is an incident of fire, the first 15 minutes are the most critical. This is the time to use all the expertise and knowledge acquired to control or prevent the fire from spreading before the arrival of fire fighters.

“If the fire can be controlled for the first 15 minutes, there is a good chance of preventing casualties or damage to property,” he said. — Bernama

Khirudin said the people must avoid being negligent, careless and forgetful when leaving their homes.

The people must continuously upgrade their knowledge on safety measures by attending programmes organised at Community Learning Centres (CLC) at the Hang Tuah, Seputeh and Hartamas Fire and Rescue Department stations every weekend.

“The CLC is aimed at providing motivation and education to the community, especially children, on ways to prevent fire and create awareness,” he said.

Meanwhile, Fire and Rescue Department assistant director-general (Fire and Rescue Services), Datuk Rusmani Muhammad said 81 people died and RM927 million worth of property was destroyed by fire in the country throughout last year.

From the first seven months this year, 66 people perished and RM419.9 million of assets went up in smoke.

Statistics also show a need for greater awareness on safety and housekeeping procedures to prevent fire as well as regular maintenance, he said adding that fire safety was a collective responsibility and that identifying fire risks are just some of the steps to prevent the dangers caused by fire. — Bernama