By Nancy Nais
LAWAS, March 26: All the 30 Fire and Rescue Department (Bomba) stations in Sarawak are open to conduct student education programmes or even birthday parties.
The department highly encourages educators, parents or members of the public to visit their stations as a means of educating the young on fire prevention.
State Bomba director Khirudin Drahman said this is one of the steps taken by the department to reach out to the community to raise fire safety awareness.
All the fire stations in the state have a fire safety module under the Children’s Fire Safety Club (Kelab 3K), which can help to raise awareness as the number of fire cases in the state are still at a very high level.
The ‘real life’ lesson includes something these children won’t get anywhere else — a private tour of the fire station and a free ride atop a fire truck with all lights flashing.
What’s more the children even get a chance to use a real fire hose.
“It’s our way of showing the young ones first-hand how firefighters work. Children must be taught to be heedful of the safety of their surroundings and understand the fact that ‘fire is not a friend’ from an early age.
“Bomba will give some space for members of the public to approach us through community programmes, like birthday celebrations, at their nearest fire and rescue stations,” Khirudin said, while addressing the local community at the launch of the Bomba Komuniti and Fire Point programme in Lawas recently.
He also emphasised on the 3L — ‘lupa, lalai dan leka’ (lazy, negligent and forgetful) — which are major causes behind fire incidences.
During the two-day programme, children as young as five-years-old participated in Kelab 3K activities such as talks on personal safety, especially in relation to fire, and a colouring session.
A 30-minute long cartoon presentation by Upin and Ipin on fire safety is also one of the ways use by the department to promote safety awareness among children, and parents also benefit from it.
“We want a community which knows what is good and bad fire, how to avoid fire, ‘stop, drop and roll’ technique, what to do in the event of disaster and most importantly, that fire can be prevented through precautionary measures,” Khirudin said, adding that this is the only way to reach out to children and expose them to fire awareness in a relaxed and easy-to-understand manner. — DayakDaily