By Nancy Nais
KUCHING, March 8: The Fire and Rescue Department (Bomba) will intensify efforts to build more Category E fire stations in Sarawak amid the high number of longhouse fire incidents in the state.
Bomba director-general Datuk Mohd Hamdan Wahid said the fire fighting facilities will enable the department to provide more efficient and effective services, especially in the rural areas.
“We are focusing on this to ensure we are able to provide the most efficient and effective services within the response time base.
“It will be manned by full-time and volunteer firefighters, as well as equipped with proper equipment to cover cases in remote and isolated areas situated far from the nearest fire station in town,” Hamdan told the reporters the department’s state annual award ceremony today.
He added that the department would enhance training programmes for the volunteer firefighters in tackling disasters, particularly fire and accidents, as well as carrying out rescue operations.
Sarawak’s difficult terrain and scattered population over such a vast geographical area would require more fire stations, especially in the rural areas. The department is looking to provide more fire and rescue services in the interiors, he continued.
Currently, there were 30 operational fire stations across the state, with six stations under construction. Hamdan expected all the new fire stations to be completed and operational by year’s end.
Considering the rapid development of many towns across the state, Bomba must also look into the aspect of fire risk especially in new industrial areas, he said.
Meanwhile, state Bomba director Khirudin Drahman said the Daro fire station was expected to be operational by June after completing their recruitment exercise of auxiliary and full-time firefighters.
The rest of the of Category E fire stations that would be completed this year included Asajaya, Selangau, Sibu Jaya, Belaga and Batu Niah, he added.
At the event, 198 Bomba personnel received their excellent service awards, while nine received their retirement certificates.
Khirudin was the sole recipient of the “30 Years of Service” certificate. — DayakDaily