Home Lagos Lagos State begins 2023 fire evacuation across MDAs

Lagos State begins 2023 fire evacuation across MDAs

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As a proactive step to enhance the faculty of government’s personnel towards ensuring the safety of lives and facilities in the event of a fire emergency, the Lagos State Fire and Rescue Service has commenced the year 2023 Evacuation Drill across the state’s Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs).

Speaking at a press briefing held on Monday at the Office’s Headquarters in Alausa Ikeja, the Commissioner for Special Duties and Intergovernmental Relations, Hon. Olugbenga Oyerinde explained that the exercise themed: “Mitigating Fire Risk through Fire Prevention”, is designed to enlighten and raise awareness among the Lagos State Government workforce about fire prevention and protection.

The Commissioner while highlighting the significance of the initiative stated that the important exercise is aimed at practising evacuation procedures, testing fire safety equipment and promoting awareness of fire safety measures among employees.

“People’s immediate actions in the event of a fire outbreak and other related emergencies are very important in avoiding casualties”, she maintained.

Hon. Olugbenga emphasised that the occasion will serve as a platform for an aggressive campaign against attacks on firefighters and false alarms, bridging the gap between firefighters and the public which according to him is crucial for safeguarding significant government investments in public order and safety.

In her remark, the Director of the Agency, Mrs. Margaret Adeseye stated that the fire prevention/evacuation drill as an annual programme extends beyond the MDAs, stressing that it is also a grassroots campaign designed to expand the fire safety net for the public across local governments, major markets, fuel depots/tanker terminals, sawmills, major motor parks, and public assemblies including religious centres and shopping malls.

Pointing out that the exercise provides opportunities for participants to gain insights into various types of basic firefighting equipment and methods for handling fire extinguishers, the Director stated that they will also learn how to assess the effectiveness of these tools and understand their critical importance in homes, workplaces, and other settings.

“Basic but important preventive measures, such as switching off and unplugging unused electrical appliances when leaving home for the office, are also part of the discussion. These simple actions can significantly reduce the risk of electrical fires and contribute to the overall fire safety”, the Director added.

Revealing that the Agency between January to October this year has received 1,327 fire emergency calls and 154 Rescue calls, Adeseye confirmed that interventions on these emergencies have led to the Agency saving about 9.728 Billion worth of properties. With this signifying increase in fire outbreaks, there is a need to create more awareness.

The Director also noted that there is a need to change the misconception that the Agency is more reactive (Firefighting) than proactive (Fire Prevention), adding that the best fire is the one prevented.

The briefing also had in attendance the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Relations, Mr. Sesan Ogundeko, Management Staff of the Agency and other emergency personnel.

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