Fire Safety: Prevention and Initiatives

Posted on 11th January 2016 by Driven Properties

Fire Safety: Prevention and Initiatives

In light of the recent blaze at The Address Downtown and the major fire that gutted the Al Shamsi Building in Deira, fires have become a major concern for UAE residents living in high-rises.

These are just two incidents in a list of fires that have occurred across the Emirate The Torch in Marina, Tamweel Tower in JLT, and Regal Tower in Business Bay to name a few. Its not always clear what the cause of these fires are, however most incidents are caused by overcrowding, lack of fire safety systems, and recklessness. In order to prevent potentially destructive fires, here are some tips and procedures along with government initiatives residents can follow.

Eliminate Hazards

  • Store all flammable materials away from anything that can burn
  • Do not let garbage accumulate in or around your home
  • Replace frayed wires, wires with dried out insulation, loose switches, and faulty devices that get extremely overheated
  • Do not run extension cords behind rugs or curtains
  • Do not overload circuits
  • Keep candles away from all flammable items and never leave them unattended

Prevention

  • Keep fire blankets and extinguishers accessible in the home
  • Check your smoke detectors regularly and replace batteries twice a year
  • Fires can be caused by the vents on clothing dryers, so clean them out once a year
  • Never dispose of cigarettes out of windows or in the rubbish

The Escape Plan

  • In case of a fire, develop a quick and safe exit strategy and an outdoor meeting point
  • Assign household members responsibility of the elderly, infants, and pets during the evacuation
  • If you live in a building, always take the stairs and walk down in a brisk but orderly fashion
  • Always keep keys easily accessible
  • Before opening doors, try to sense if theres a fire on the other side
  • Try to establish multiple exit ways
  • If possible, keep an emergency kit with first aid material as well as an emergency contact list and copies of all important documents in the car or in an off-site location that can be accessed easily

During A Fire

  • Dont look for personal belongings
  • If your clothing catches on fire: stop, drop, and roll
  • In the case of dense smoke, crawl on the ground
  • Do not go back in under any circumstances

Initiatives

In light of recent fire emergencies, government entities and organizations have taken the initiative to increase awareness on fire prevention and emergency procedures. Dashboard Monitoring System: Working in line with Dubai Governments smart city initiatives, Dubai Civil Defence has begun installing the Dubai Life Safety Dashboard in buildings around the city 40,000 and counting. The system will give government departments, building owners, and residents access to view the real-time safety status of their buildings on their devices. Silicon Oasis Safety Measures: In collaboration with Dubai Civil Defence, Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority organized a fire and evacuation drill in order to develop an emergency evacuation plan in the event of a fire in the high-tech park. The drill included a simulated fire incident with fire-trucks and ambulance cars to enhance the scenario. DEWA Fire Prevention Week: Dubai Electricity and Water Authority organized a program titled Fire Safety: Learn and Practice, which entailed a week of activities aimed to promote awareness about emergency situations and best practices in fire emergencies. DEWA sees these kinds of programs as part of its responsibility to society and social development.