A total of 5,155 fires were tackled by the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS) from January to October last year.
Out of the number, 540 were road crashes resulting in 307 deaths and 2,417 injuries, the Chief Fire Officer (CFO) Julius Kuunuor has disclosed.
Speaking at the GNFS’ Thanksgiving, Nine Lessons and Carols Service at the Service’s headquarters in Accra on Monday, the CFO said through its timely interventions, property worth GH¢20 million had been salvaged.
According to him there was a remarkable decrease in fire outbreaks on a monthly basis, from 1,090 fire outbreaks in January, 2022 to 366 fire outbreaks in October, 2022 adding that “this was due to the extensive public fire safety education carried out nationwide.”
He said the service undertook fire education in 9,014 public institutions and places such as markets, churches, schools in various languages through the mass media and at public gatherings.
“Fire audit was conducted in 8,461 public or residential premises in line with fire safety standards to ensure the safety of occupants. The service also issued 15,947 fire certificates, out of which 11,636 were renewals issued to existing buildings,” he added.
CFO Kuunuor said 2,405 fire permits were issued to various organisation and exceeded its annual target of GH¢2, 583, 081.20 by 28 per cent as at October 2022.
In terms of human resource development, he said 443 Officer Cadets, 1,557 recruits and 689 drivers were trained at the Fire Academy and Training School; 40 officers attended effective leadership workshop, 28 officers attended public investment management programme, 200 officers had training in fire certificates management system.
“In terms of promotions for the year, a total number of 1,503 junior officers and 58 senior officers were promoted,” he added.
The CFO of the GNFS said the service was focused on ensuring fire free in the coming year through fire safety education by undertaking intensive house- to -house as well as radio and television education programmes on fire safety precaution campaign nationwide.
Again, he said the service would enter into public private partnership arrangements to ensure that various homes across the country were certified to be able to minimise fire outbreaks, loss of lives and property.
The Interior Minister, Ambrose Dery, in a statement read on his behalf said the government recognised the good work of the service over the years for which reason it would continue to work to improve their working conditions and support them improve upon their service delivery to the public.
BY ABIGAIL ARTHUR & CECILIA LAGBA