Homeowners Urged to Get Fire Detecting Devices

Photo: Garwin Davis Senior Deputy Superintendent and Public Relations Officer of the Jamaica Fire Brigade (JFB), Emilio Ebanks (right), addresses JIS ‘Think Tank’ at the agency’s Regional Office in Montego Bay, St. James, recently. At left is Managing Director of AcVark Fire and Security Equipment Company, Delroy Thorpe,

Story Highlights

  • The Jamaica Fire Brigade (JFB) is cautioning homeowners against taking fire prevention measures for granted, warning that the consequences could be dire.
  • Speaking at a JIS ‘Think Tank’ at the agency’s Montego Bay Regional Office in St. James recently, Senior Deputy Superintendent of the JFB, Emilio Ebanks, pointed out that persons who choose to ignore fire warnings or are reluctant to equip their homes with fire detecting devices are literally playing with their lives.
  • Mr. Ebanks further argued that the presence of functional first aid firefighting equipment can mean the difference between extensive loss and saving lives and property.

The Jamaica Fire Brigade (JFB) is cautioning homeowners against taking fire prevention measures for granted, warning that the consequences could be dire.

Speaking at a JIS ‘Think Tank’ at the agency’s Montego Bay Regional Office in St. James recently, Senior Deputy Superintendent of the JFB, Emilio Ebanks, pointed out that persons who choose to ignore fire warnings or are reluctant to equip their homes with fire detecting devices are literally playing with their lives.

“It is mind boggling, frightening to say the least, that persons would choose not to protect their homes and families by not installing devices that can save them in the event of a fire,” Mr. Ebanks said.

“One of the greatest investments anybody can make is in a home and you would want to think that everything would be done to protect that investment,” he added.

Mr. Ebanks further argued that the presence of functional first aid firefighting equipment can mean the difference between extensive loss and saving lives and property.

He said the JFB, through community outreach programmes and public bulletins, cannot stress enough the necessity of having fire extinguishers and smoke alarms in homes and public buildings.

“It is highly recommended that persons do invest in these life saving devices for their own protection. They are capable of alerting home occupiers of the presence of a fire before the smoke it produces is able to cause significant harm or death. The risk of dying in a home fire is reduced by 50 per cent when properly installed and functional smoke alarms are present,” Mr. Ebanks said.

He also pointed to bushfires as another community hazard, arguing that a lot of damage has been amassed over the years as a result.

“The prevalence and devastation of bushfires in recent times has further highlighted the need to intensify the education of the average community member on how to prevent bushfires and how to manage them if they should occur,” Mr. Ebanks said.

He noted that the British High Commission partnered with the JFB to pilot the Community Bushfire Management Education Programme in Mavis Bank, St. Andrew and Nain in St. Elizabeth.

“The programme is aimed at increasing awareness and building the capabilities of community members and farmers in alternative techniques to slash and burn,” Mr. Ebanks said.

He had high praise for AcVark Fire and Security Equipment Company, a western Jamaica based company, for partnering with the JFB to save lives.

“AcVark continues to make a difference in fire-fighting in Jamaica and continues to partner with the JFB in our outreach programmes, most recently during National Fire Safety Awareness Week, which was observed from October 23-29,” Mr. Ebanks said.

For his part, AcVark’s Managing Director, Delroy Thorpe, informed that the company now has three locations in Ocho Rios, Montego Bay and Negril, and has its own branded fire extinguishers with new and advanced features capable of withstanding the tropical climate.

“We are now able to offer wholesale fire extinguishers and provide fire blankets which are very effective in protecting the body from being burnt,” he added.

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