The Central Regional Command of the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS) recorded a marginal increase in fires from 611 in 2020 to 624 in 2021.
According to the Service, 40% of the fires, which were mostly domestic, bushfires, vehicular, industrial and commercial collisions, were extinguished before firefighters arrived.
Assistant Commissioner of Fire (ACFO), John Amartey, the Regional Commander revealed this during a thanksgiving service hosted by the Service on Wednesday in Cape Coast.
This was to exalt the Lord for His blessings and guidance on Service personnel over the years and to seek further guidance for years to come.
The ceremony was graced by Mrs. Justina Marigold Assan, Central Regional Minister, Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCOP) Kwadwo Antwi Tabi, Commander Central Regional Police and Mr. Kingsley Adjei-Boahen, Regional Coordinating Director.
The others are Assistant Commissioner for Immigration (ACI), Fisal Disu, Central Regional Commander of Ghana Immigration Service, Deputy Director of Prisons, Dominic Nicholas Arthur, former Central Regional Director of Ghana Prisons Service and former soldiers.
ACFO Amartey said that despite the intensification of fire safety measures adopted throughout the region, there were still fires.
Among other things, he said, the Service increased fire safety education from 319 in 2020 to 408 in 2021 and also increased premises inspections to 685 from 413 in 2020.
In addition, fire safety training also increased from 34 to 48 during the same period.
The GNFS Central Regional Commander said poor management of open fires, power outages, gas leaks and lack of adherence to safety education by many residents were the main causes of the fires.
He advised the public to be very careful when using fire and electricity, to avoid overloading sockets and extension cords.
He called on the general public to report the fires as soon as possible so that the command can put them out effectively to help save lives and property.
Nonetheless, he commended Service personnel for their dedication and commitment to duty and celebrated all the valiant heroes who died fighting the fires, especially ADO II Joseph Baidoo of Agona-Swedru.
He said: “The central region has one of the best and best trained rescue teams in the country which continues to save lives from road accidents, floods and drownings.
“We will forever remember ADO II who lost his life in the line of duty and others who suffered varying degrees of injury in the line of duty. We appreciate their dedication and patriotism,” did he declare.