Fire hazard A barbecue is set up on the balcony by a resident. Image Credit: Mohit Talreja

A few days ago, I came across some unacceptable behaviour by people living in my community. I am involved in many awareness campaigns these days due to which I have to go out frequently in my neighbourhood in Al Khan area, Sharjah. One day, I could smell something burning. When I looked around I noticed smoke coming from a balcony in the building adjacent to mine and thought there was a fire.

But on looking closely, I noticed that a barbecue was set up in the balcony. Young children were left unattended and were running close to the grill. Clothes and carpets were left out to dry close to the grill and the most dangerous was the gas pipeline nearby.

Such a practice endangers not just the lives of the people responsible for the barbecue, but also the children and the neighbourhood. Sometimes the hot coal pieces are disposed off in the normal trash bins, which could be the reason of a fire in the building.

There have been several news reports about the use of barbecues only in designated areas. We cannot just barbecue anywhere we wish. Fines would be imposed on offenders and this measure was taken for the safety and wellbeing of the residents and visitors.

Even in an open area, such as a beach or park, people leave burning pieces of coal around that could harm other visitors. It also distorts the beauty of a place and is harmful to the environment. The visitors are then reluctant to approach the area again for a picnic.

It is the responsibility of every individual to play their part and understand that whatever steps are being taken are for the welfare of the community. We should appreciate the efforts put in by the authorities as they are doing their best to raise awareness for the safety and wellbeing of people and the environment. I urge the readers to be more responsible towards their family, children and surroundings and think before they act.


The reader is based in Sharjah.


Be a community reporter. Tell us what is happening in your community. Send us your videos and pictures at readers@gulfnews.com