Following the recent fire incidents in some markets in the state, Lagos State government on Thursday embarked on an intense fire sensitization campaign to some markets, educating the traders on fire prevention and safety measures.
Addressing the traders during the sensitization exercise that took top government officer drawn from the state’s Ministry of Special Duties, Lagos Safety Commission, and Lagos State Fire and Rescue Service Timber markets in Oko-Baba, Amu in Mushin and Timber Market in Isolo, the state’s Commissioner for Special Duties, Gbenga Oyerinde said the losses being recorded in the state as a result of fire incidents informed the sensitization campaign.
Oyerinde said the sensitization campaign would be taken to other sectors in the state, saying, ‘’ There is a roadmap for the year, amongst the road map is the stakeholders meeting across every sector of the grassroots. Today we are with the timber sector, we are going to go to the mechanics, and we will reach out to marketplaces where they sell different things. We will still hold mega stakeholders forum where every interest will be taken care of.’’
The Director General of the Lagos Safety Commission, Lanre Mojola while fielding questions from newsmen said, ‘’We are here to bring the message of safety to the grassroots, like we always say, prevention is better than cure. It is better to prevent fire than fight the fire, because when you fight the fire there are so many things that happen. First is the loss of lives, second is damage to property. That is why we are here. We are here in the markets to talk to them about fire prevention and safety measures. We have the flyers. We have seen the improvement from where we are coming from. It’s a continuous exercise that will be done in all the nooks and crannies of Lagos state.’’
The Director of the Lagos Fire and Rescue Service Margaret Adeseye during the sensitization exercise lamented incessant fire outbreaks in the state, 2,583 fire outbreaks were recorded in the state in 2023.
According to her, the service received 251 emergency calls in January alone, attributing the rise in the cases of fire outbreaks primarily to negligence and delayed reporting.
She added that human actions such as improper storage of petroleum products, misuse of electrical appliances, hot works operations, and mishandling of gas cylinders remained significant contributing factors.
As a way out of the problem , she said the Lagos State government is intensifying its fire safety awareness campaign across all local government areas, focusing on key public spaces, including markets, hospitals, schools, and religious centres for enhanced outreach efforts.