Oman: Construction growth causes more fire cases

35 industrial fire accidents were reported in 2015, compared with 36 and 34 in 2014 and 2013, according the Public Authority for Civil Defence and Ambulance (PACDA)

One of the main causes for fires in labour camps is the use of caravans instead of fixed buildings to house the labourers. (Source: National Geographic)
One of the main causes for fires in labour camps is the use of caravans instead of fixed buildings to house the labourers. (Source: National Geographic)

As industrial activity in Oman increases, so does the number of fire incidents.

According the Public Authority for Civil Defence and Ambulance (PACDA), 35 industrial fire accidents were reported in 2015, compared with 36 and 34 in 2014 and 2013.

“The Sultanate of Oman witnessed during the last decade, fast industrial activity; as a result there are possibilities of accidents, with human and physical losses,” said PACDA, according to Times of Oman.

14 factories caught on fire in 2015, along with five carpentry workshops, four furniture workshops and seven vehicle workshops.

The causes for these fires, PACDA said, are due to failure to follow requirements issued by PACDA and unorganised storage of hazardous material in unsuitable environments.

One of the main causes for fires in labour camps, for example, is the use of caravans instead of fixed buildings to house the labourers.

“They do not follow periodical maintenance of alarm systems and have insufficient fire extinguishers in the building,” said PACDA. “They also don’t ensure that the electrical connections inside the building are valid.”

 

To avoid fires in the future, PACDA suggests storing permitted materials in proper conditions, using fixed structures to house labourers and maintaining fire alarms and fire extinguishers.

“Assigning a supervisor for safety and security and training the workers of establishments by conducting fire drills in establishments will help avoid fires,” said PACDA.

“Training workers and employees on first aid and how to deal with emergencies is also essential,” advised PACDA.
 

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