Abu Dhabi: Abu Dhabi has warned residents against lighting wood and coal fires indoors, which can expose them to risks like suffocation and burning, and has urged proper monitoring of any fires that are lit.
The Abu Dhabi Police and Abu Dhabi Civil Defence Authority issued the warning alongside an emirate-wide inspection of fire hydrants.
With temperatures dipping during the winter, many residents have taken to enjoying barbecues and campfires during gatherings with friends and family. However, the lack of care for fire safety protocols can lead to major fire hazards, authorities have said.
Light fires carefully
In particular, individuals must be careful when lighting firewood, and ensure they do not get burned in the process. They must also make sure to put out the fire before retiring for the night.
Ensure proper ventilation
The absence of proper ventilation when fires are lit indoors, or in areas without proper ventilation, can also result in fatalities from smoke inhalation and suffocation. Authorities therefore have urged that all fires be carefully lit in open areas, or spaces with proper ventilation and smoke exhausts.
The authorities also called on residents to ensure that all fires are lit in open areas, or in areas with proper ventilation that allow the smoke to escape.
In all cases, fires should be extinguished before the group leaves or settles down for the night, when the flames cannot be monitored for safety.
Electrical equipment safety
Police and Civil Defence officials said the same standard of safety must be maintained when using heaters. Indoor heaters must also be in proper condition when in use, with regular maintenance, in order to avoid fire outbreaks and accidents.
In addition, wiring must be properly connected, and should not be placed under carpeting or floor coverings that can catch fire. Heaters must also be placed away from damp areas and moisture.
Children must be kept away from fires and heat sources, and guardians must ensure that they do not play with fire sources or flammable materials.
Inspection of hydrants
In order to ensure public safety, the Civil Defence Authority is carrying out a thorough inspection of all outdoor and public fire hydrants in the emirate, including checking on their water pressure and overall condition. This initiative is aimed at ensuring a speedy and effective response in case of emergencies.