The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has cautioned Nigerians against activities that may result in fire outbreak, as dry season sets in.
The NEMA Coordinator in Ekiti State, Mr Olusegun Afolayan, gave the advice at a stakeholders’ forum on fire prevention, mitigation and preparedness, organised by the agency yesterday in Ado-Ekiti.
Afolayan also cautioned against indiscriminate bush burning which, he said, could destroy the eco-system and increase the effect of climate change.
He said that the forum was aimed at sensitising Nigerians to be extra careful in the handling of fire during the dry season, noting that many lives and property had been lost to fire disasters in the past.
According to the NEMA chief, indiscriminate bush burning, especially for hunting of games, should be avoided as this could extend to neighbouring farmlands and houses, thus destroying the ecosystem and contributing to climate change.
Afolayan said that bushes close to people’s surroundings should be cleared, adding that fire extinguishers should be refilled and made handy in the house.
The General Manager, Ekiti State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), Mr Jide Borode, said dried leaves and papers should be disposed of properly, while electrical appliances should also be switched off and unplugged when not in use.
All these preventive measures, he said, would go a long way in checking fire outbreak as well as mitigating its impacts.
Mr Sunday Adeleye, Head of Operations of Fire Service in the state, attributed most incidences of fire outbreaks to carelessness and ignorance.
He urged people to be careful in dealing with fire in the dry season, stressing the need for all to have fire extinguisher in houses, offices and markets.
Adeleye assured the residents of the state that his men would be on the alert to respond to any case of fire outbreak.
The forum was attended by officials of the state fire service, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), National Orientation Agency (NOA), Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), market men and women.