Six negligent property owners asked to pay firefighting costs, plus Dh50,000 fine in Sharjah
Sharjah: Six owners whose industrial and commercial buildings that are not up to the current fire safety standards have to foot firefighting bills at their premises, Sharjah Civil Defence has warned.
If found to have violated the fire safety codes, owners of warehouses, workshops, factories and commercial outlets will be required to cover all costs associated with dousing a blaze, the fire department confirmed.
The charges are based on the number of hours spent extinguishing a fire, the number of fire engines and firefighter teams used and materials employed during dousing operations.
The charges are being levied on top of fines of up to Dh50,000 for flouting fire safety codes as prescribed by regulations in the emirate.
Since the beginning of this year until end of November, six companies have already borne the cost of extinguishing fires on their premises in addition to other fines as they were found to have violated safety rules, fire officials told Gulf News.
Colonel Sami Khamis Al Naqbi, director-general of Sharjah Civil Defence, said stricter fire prevention measures are being adopted as part of Ministerial Resolution No. 213 of 2017.
"We decided to implement it here in Sharjah, due to its unique situation related to the size of our industrial areas,” said Col Al Naqbi.
“Our main priority is to ensure safety for people and at the same time, a safe and peaceful environment for the Sharjah emirate, which attracts a large number of industrial businesses in the country,” he said.
“Inspectors from each fire station will be carrying out inspections in the areas they cover to check if these industrial facilities comply with the fire safety regulations,” said Col Al Naqbi.
Col. Al Naqbi said making negligent owners of industrial and commercial buildings pay for the firefighting costsd in case of a fire is aimed at ensuring they are deterred from flouting fire-safety norms,
Col. Al Naqbi has urged all property owners, investors and tenants to adhere to safety rules and share the responsibility with Civil Defence in protecting life and property on their premises. If a tenant notices any violation on the part of the building owner in the form of random storage of material or running faulty fire alarm systems, then he or she should approach Civil Defence for appropriate action against the building owner. He also urged property owners to include conditions in tenancy contracts, and make tenants sign them, in order to prohibit smoking on the balconies.
Colonel Al Naqbi said stricter fire prevention measures were being adopted as part of Ministerial Resolution No 213 of 2017.