Still from Abu Dhabi Civil Defence video shared by Abu Dhabi Media Office, showing officials checking fire systems in a building Image Credit: X/@CivilDefenceAD/@ADMediaOffice

Abu Dhabi: The Abu Dhabi Civil Defence Authority has launched a ‘Field Survey’ initiative to measure the compliance rate and commitment of buildings, establishments and shops with the aim of raising the standards of prevention, safety and security imposed by the authority to prevent fires and serious accidents.

Colonel Salem Abdullah Al Dhaheri, Acting Director-General of the Abu Dhabi Civil Defence Authority, said in a statement broadcast on the social networking sites of the Authority, that the Authority seeks to provide and enhance community protection through assessing and analysing risks and the rate of provision of safety and security procedures in buildings.

The locations were subjected to random inspections, with the Authority’s inspection teams starting with residences, commercial buildings and residential towers, economic establishments, and industrial areas in the targeted locations.

Col Al Dhaheri explained: “One of the most important standards and conditions for commercial buildings and facilities to meet is the presence of fire detectors and alarm devices, in addition to the presence of maintenance contracts with companies approved by the Abu Dhabi Civil Defence Authority.”

He added: “We call on the owners of buildings and facilities to ensure that all safety and security requirements and instructions are met to prevent fire accidents. We also advise the owners of buildings and economic establishments to contact the authority in order to ensure contracts with technical and specialised companies to maintain fire systems.”

Call for cooperation

Col Al Dhaheri concluded by saying: “The most important factor in the success of the field survey initiative is cooperation, combined efforts, and team work between the owners, the Authority, and the strategic partners working with it, who played a major and effective role in the success of the [Field Survey] initiative.

“The Civil Defence Authority is keen to raise the level of safety standards and security from fire risks, and this step contributes to preventing serious fire incidents that may lead to loss of property and lives. Raising the level of standards directly contributes to raising the index of sustainability of the feeling of safety in the emirate of Abu Dhabi.”

Mandatory installation

In accordance with safety and security procedures, instructions of Civil Defence say owners of residential houses are mandated to install fire detecting devices in their houses and subscribe to the Civil Defence eSystem. Meanwhile, commercial buildings and residential apartments are monitored by the Intelligent Command and Control solution [called Hassantuk] which aims to support the achievement of the UAE National Agenda 2021 in becoming one of the safest countries in the world as well as sustaining the reduction of the rate of fires and fire-related deaths compared to other countries worldwide.

Owners of residential houses are mandated to install fire detecting devices in their houses and subscribe to the Civil Defence eSystem as per a resolution approved by the UAE Cabinet in September 2020.

The resolution will be applied to all existing residences and those that will be built. Owners of existing houses have been granted three years from the issuance of the resolution to install the fire detecting devices.

It also stipulates that the federal or local government departments concerned with issuing licences for the construction of residential homes must ensure that fire detectors have been installed and the owner has subscribed to the eSystem, before granting a completion certificate.

The federal and local governments will bear the costs of installing these devices in the homes of people with limited income. The federal government had previously covered these costs for homeowners who receive social assistance from Ministry of Community Development.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Interior, through Civil Defence Departments, will carry out the provisions of the resolution and cooperate with all parties concerned to facilitate its implementation.

Fire safety protocols 

• Emergency evacuation routes

• Fire safety exit signs and fire alarms

• Preventative inspections and maintenance

• Training staff at the workplace on prevention and safety measures

• Partnering with a preventative, full-service fire safety company

Source: Abu Dhabi Civil Defence Authority