Wa General fire incidents in the Upper West Region have increased from 198 in 2019 to 243 in 2020 with domestic fires leading the chart for the past four years.
There were 65 domestic fire incidents recorded in 2019, which increased to 79 incidents in 2020, while bush fires also saw a marginal rise from 56 to 57 respectively.
While vehicular incidents inched up from 16 in 2019 to 23 in 2020, commercial vehicles dropped by one as it correspondingly recorded 24 and 23.
Accident fire incidents equally increased marginally from six to seven in 2019 and 2020 respectively, whilw electrical incidents jumped from 14 to 30 incidents likewise.
Industrial fires recorded one each in both years under review whereas institutional fires increased from nine in 2019 to 15 in 2020.
Other fire incidents also inched up marginally from seven to eight correspondingly.
Estimated cost of damage in 2019 stood at GH¢498,930.00 whereas the 2020 figure stood at GH¢1,009,875.00.
Also estimated cost of salvage in 2019 was GH¢2,710,700.00 and that of 2020 is GH¢1, 207,225.00.
Divisional Officer III (DO III), Mr Martin Bakobie, the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS) Public Relations Officer (PRO) for the Upper West Region blamed the high number of domestic fires on non-compliance to fire safety standards on the part of the public especially with regards to the installation of basic fire equipment like fire extinguishers in their various homes.
He advised citizens to always call the fire service immediately they detect any fire situation instead of attempting to fight it by themselves till it got out of hand.
Mr Bakobie appealed to the public to visit the fire station to pick their contact number to enable them to call immediately to duty when there was fire outbreak.
Again, he advised the public to cultivate the habit of checking gas cylinders regularly to lookout for any leakages and also avoid storing volatile substances like Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) in dangerous places to avoid fire outbreaks.
According to the Fire Service PRO, most of the domestic fires occurred as a result of some level of carelessness on the part of some members of the public, adding that if the human error was avoided, domestic fires would have reduced drastically.
Source: Ghana News Agency