Colonel Ali Al Mutawa at the new command centre with the 70-metre screen in the background. The centre also has a disaster command room manned by 29 people constantly Image Credit: Ali Al Shouq/Gulf News

Dubai: All villas in Dubai will be linked to a new command centre of Civil Defence by the end of 2019, officials announced on Monday.

Officials are hoping to link around 90,000 homes to the new centre in Al Ghusais where a dedicated team of 29 people sitting in front of a 70 meter screen will monitor all fires and emergencies in the city, they said during a media tour of the command centre.

Major General Rashid Thani Al Matroushi, Director-General of the Dubai Civil Defence, said the new command centre is equipped with latest technology and will be operating officially within a few weeks.

“The new command centre has a disaster command room manned by and 29 people round-the-clock. They scan the city to provide best response time during emergencies,” Major General Al Matroushi said.

The 70-metre LED screen, weighing 6.5 tones is linked to 53,823 buildings in Dubai and can monitor ships up to 10 miles off the coast.It can also monitor incoming and outgoing flights in case of emergencies.

The announcement regarding the new command centre was made came during the launch of the 7th Emirates Fire Safety Technology Forum which will be held on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Major General Al Matroushi, said that new mandatory fire-safety regulations will be implemented in the future following several deaths in two grisly Dubai fires recently.

“All the villas in Dubai need to install fire safety equipment such as fire and smoke detectors. We will start advertising for the fire detectors this year until 2019 when all owners must install the device. It will link all Dubai buildings to our command centre for fast response,” Major General Al Matroushi added.

At the moment, the official said, only 528 homes are connected to the command centre but in three years time, around 90,000 villas will be linked to it. Smoke and fire alarm detectors installed in villas will be linked to a dashboard where the owner can click to send direct SOS to the command centre.

Major General Al Matroushi said Dubai Civil Defence will use nanotechnology in its firefighting operations. “This technology will help reduce the need for huge fire extinguishing devices. Nanotechnology can also be used to produce different-sized adhesive plates which can be placed normally in a confined place, where it can be automatically activated within the intended space when the temperature exceeds the permissible levels. The exact amount of gas needed for extinguishing the fire is released, targeting the source and thus preventing its spread,” Major General Al Matroushi said.

He said the nanotechnology can be used to rapidly suppress fires from electrical power sockets, circuit breaker panels and CU electrical panels, “Our target is to fight the fires before arrival of our firefighters.”

He said firefighters will have a new uniform, which is water resistant, and lighter than the one used now.

Smart application

Colonel Ali Al Mutawa, assistant director of Dubai Civil Defence said they launched a smart application for buildings’ owners, which help them to check if there is something wrong with their fire safety equipment and also to send a SOS to the command centre in case of fires or emergencies. “We are looking to link 66,554 buildings with this SOS application and the command centre by the end of this year,” Colonel Al Mutawa said.