Sarawak needs more fire stations, says director

Khirudin (left) pressing the alarm bell of the Sibu Jaya fire station after the handover ceremony.

SIBU: Throughout the coastal plains of Sarawak, the state comprises of 12 divisions and in each division are encompassed an average of two to five districts. As of today, there are 40 districts situated respectively from the coasts of Kuching to Limbang.

Currently, the state has 34 operating fire stations and according to Fire and Rescue Department (Bomba) state director Khirudin Drahman, Sarawak needs at least 25 more.

Khirudin said that although the state currently has 34 fire stations, new stations are needed and they need to be sited at strategic and high-risk areas.

“Based on our study, the new stations would enable the firefighters to cut response time, thereby enable the department to serve the people more efficiently,” said Khirudin at at the handing over ceremony of the RM58 million Sibu Jaya station by the Public Works Department (PWD) to Bomba yesterday.

Khirudin said that the construction of a fire station was costly, hence this would depend on funding received from the government.

In the meantime, he said Bomba had identified various ways to reduce response time such as increasing manpower and the formation of volunteer firefighting teams and community firefighting teams.

Khirudin further elaborated that the Sarawak Bomba have been scheduled to be receiving 10 new firefighting vehicles, of which five would be delivered soon and another five by year’s end.

The department would also be receiving nine units of rapid intervention motorcycles to boost firefighting and rescue operations.