Plans are far advanced by the government to procure equipment to boost the operations of the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS), Mr Julius Kuunuor, Chief Fire Officer (CFO) of the Service has stated.
The equipment, he said included Rapid Intervention Vehicles (RIVs) Command Cars, Utility Vehicles, Ambulances, Hearses, and Dispatch Motorcycles, which would replace aged fleet and improve response time by the Service.
Mr Kuunour disclosed this at the opening of the maiden fire conference in Accra yesterday on the theme “Enhancing Effective Fire Management for National development.”
The three-day conference being organised by the GNFS seeks to bring stakeholders together to deliberate on fire issues, and ways to reduce the menace in the country.
In attendance were members of the fire management board, district, regional fire commanders, members of the fire service council, representatives from sister security agencies and stakeholders of the GNFS, among others.
He said one out of 300 of the RIVs had already been shipped to Ghana for demonstration.
The CFO said the period between January 1, 2022 to October, 31, 2022 yielded remarkable results, adding that there was a decline in fire outbreaks from 1,090 to 366 due to an intensive fire safety education and patrols in the markets and key installations nationwide.
He commended personnel for the high professionalism exhibited over the years and urged all to continue to be disciplined and work as a team, to enhance the corporate image of the Service.
He thanked the government for its continuous support to the Service to discharge its operations effectively.
The Minister for the Interior, Mr Ambrose Dery, stated that fire safety required “an-all-hands-on-deck approach” to ensure that it is holistically tackled.
He said the Planting for Food and Jobs, a flagship project of the government designed to ensure adequate and continuous food supply for home consumption, raw material to feed the agro-processing industries and for foreign exchange had been threatened by bush fires in some parts of the country.
“In the same vein, the One District One Factory (1D1F) initiative with the much needed investments into local industries and that of other private investors which are geared towards providing employment for the teeming youth of this country in order to spur on economic and social development will hung in the balance if these investments are not protected from the ravages of fire,” he added
The minister said RIVs would help the Service “navigate its way” through traffic to arrive at the emergency scene on time.
“These RIV’s have dual purpose of fighting fires and for Road Traffic Extrication, adding that a RIV had been delivered to the GNFS on a pilot basis and after which a decision will be taken,” he added.
The Minster urged stakeholders to collaborate to address fire issues in the country
He urged the public to support the efforts being made by the government and the Service by adhering to good fire safety practices in order to curb the incidence of fire outbreaks, and other emergency.
BY ANITA NYARKOYIRENKYI