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By Nancy Nais
BA’KELALAN (Lawas), March 24: Several senior officers and personnel from Fire and Rescue Department (Bomba) Sarawak recently took a road trip from Lawas to Ba’Kelalan to spread fire safety awareness.
They spent 2-days-1-night with five communities, starting from Lawas town to Long Sukang, Long Luping, Long Semadoh and ending at the Ba’Kelalan highlands.
Pledging the department’s commitment to continuously hold fire safety programmes for as many communities as they can, state fire chief Khirudin Drahman said it was important for each and everyone to learn how to deal with emergency situations, such as fire pending the arrival of firefighters, as it could help minimise potential losses.
“We must continue to raise awareness on how to put out a fire in the early stages of an outbreak. This is why the department has been aggressively moving around in the state with its ‘Community Outreach Programme’,” he said as he addressed villagers at Long Sukang, Long Luping, Long Semadoh and Ba’Kelalan separately and later at the launching of the Bomba Komuniti programme and ‘fire point’ at Kampung Sahabat Baru in Lawas.
Apart from spreading awareness of fire and safety, Bomba also gave fire extinguishers to village heads.
Application forms from the respective village heads to form their own Bomba komuniti were also handed over to the department.
“We have been working closely with the Sarawak government and corporate sectors in terms of programme funding and implementation, which we will continue to do so. For every programme we organised for the community, it includes fire safety and awareness. Not only that, we also include children programme under the Children’s Fire Safety Club (3K),” he said.
Advising the folks on the 3L syndrome — ‘Lupa, Leka dan Lalai’, which refers to forgetfulness, carelessness and negligent attitudes of the public, Khirudin said this was among the major contributors to fires tragedies.
Whether they live in urban or rural areas, Khirudin stressed that everyone should be aware of the need to prevent tragedies, which caused loss of lives and damage to property.
“Fire prevention is a joint responsibility and not just that of the fire department. You cannot depend on Bomba alone. Bomba is unable to do this on our own. We need the help and cooperation from all, including those villages in the rural areas that are far flung from the nearest fire station. The establishment of the volunteer firefighting team is for the same reason,” he said.
At the same time, the department also urged every community to set up its own Bomba komuniti group in their respective areas.
They welcome the establishment of a Bomba Komuniti in the whole of the state in an effort to bring the department closer to the community.
The aim is to establish a direct connection between the department and the community, including conducting fire fighting exercises, knowledge sharing and training in preparation of emergency situations.
Khirudin said through the Bomba Komuniti, various information and awareness campaigns could also be carried out, including eradicating false calls, firing firecrackers and submitting information to bomba in case of anxiety. — DayakDaily