KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 22 ? More fire drills and fire safety awareness programmes should be conducted at residential areas following reports that most fires, as well as other tragedies, occurred at homes.
Safety advocate Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye said non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and resident associations should work with the relevant agencies such as the Fire and Rescue Department (JBPM) and the Health Department to organise such programmes.
Activities like performing a safety audit, teaching children about fire hazards and conducting fire drills should be held during the programmes, he added.
“Every year, between 30,000 and 60,000 fire incidents are reported in the country. On average, about 6,000 premises are destroyed by fire every year and about 40 per cent of them are private houses.
“Although JBPM has conducted thousands of fire safety awareness talks and fire drills every year, more should be done in order to help equip the people with basic fire safety knowledge and skills,” he said in a statement here yesterday.
According to Lee, everyone should learn basic fire survival skills and create a house safety and emergency exit plans that will enable the occupants to leave the premises safely during a fire or other disasters.
He said parents must impart the knowledge and share evacuation plans with their children as studies have shown that with adequate knowledge, skills and proactive measures, the public could minimise fire risks and contain a fire until professional help arrived.
“The authorities must also encourage the installation of fire detection equipment, such as smoke detectors or fire alarms since the safety of occupants also depends on them,” he said. ? Bernama