House fires during festive season increasing

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KUCHING: The Fire and Rescue Department (Bomba) is gearing up for any occurrence of house fires during the upcoming Hari Raya Aidilfitri and Gawai.

Sarawak Bomba director Datuk Khirudin Drahman disclosed that Bomba had identified an increasing trend of house fires during festive season.

However, he pointed out that there had been a decrease in the number of house fires from 255 cases in 2018 to 174 last year.

Within the period of three years, Lopeng saw the highest number of house fires with 46 followed by Petrajaya (45) while Bintulu, Limbang and Miri recorded 26 cases respectively.

“We believe that the downward trend is most likely contributed to the high level of alertness and preparedness of the public. This is a very encouraging and positive development.

“Moreover, it also shows that the public are more cautious and attentive when it comes to fire safety,” he said on Thursday (April 7).

With the festive season synonymous with busy kitchen activities, Khirudin urged the public, especially women, to be alert to what was going on in the kitchen.

“The 3Ls – ‘Lupa, Leka dan Lalai’ or ‘forgetfulness, carelessness and negligence’ are often the culprit when it comes to kitchen fire.

“Women would often be busy and enjoying themselves baking cakes or cookies and cooking.”

As such, Khirudin advocated that each household had precautionary measures such as installing a smoke detector alarm and fire extinguishers.

“The smoke detector alarm is affordable and effective as one of the precautionary measures. A smoke detector alarm generates 90 decibels, loud enough to even wake a hibernating polar bear,” he quipped.

“Besides that, fire extinguishers are now readily available in different sizes such as 1kg, 3kg and 9kg, which the public can purchase and keep in their house in case of any fire incident.”

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