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Saturday, April 13, 2024

State Secretariat, Popular Hotel, Fuel/Radio Stations Saved, As Anambra Records 3 Fire Outbreaks Within One Week

By Izunna Okafor, Awka

Three different fires incident have been recorded in different parts of Anambra State within a space of one week.

This is coming even as rainy season gradually gives signs of its early arrival in the state and other parts of country.

The first in the list of the fire incidents occured at about 1.pm on Saturday, March 2, at the Dubis Hotel and Suites (former Wigo Hotel) in Ukpomili, Ifitedunu, Dunukofia Local Government Area of the State.

The hotel, which is located along the Awka—Onitsha Old Road, is also situated very close to a petrol filling station.

The fire outbreak, which is attributed to power surge was said to have destroyed only the CCTV Control Room of the Hotel before it was extinguished by the gallant firefighters from the Anambra State Fire Service who saved the main hotel buildings and all nearby structures, including the filling station.

The second fire outbreak occurred behind the Anambra State Secretariat Complex in Awka, the state’s capital.

The outbreak, which occurred at about 9.27pm on Tuesday, March 5, was caused by bush fire ignited by unidentified persons who left it unattended to after igniting it.

The heavy fire was already smoking up a part of the Secretariat fence before the intervention of the Fire Service who fought, controlled and extinguished it, thereby preventing its entrance into the Secretariat Complex. The firefighters eventually left the scene at about 10.15.pm.

It was two days after the incident that another heavy fire outbreak gutted a private radio station in the state.

The radio station, Kpakpando FM, located at Mbaukwu in Awka South Local Government Area of the state, was said to have been badly affected by the fire.

It was gathered that the incident, which occurred at approximately 9.30pm on Thursday, March 8, destroyed the office building, leaving its studio equipment partly burnt, while some equipments and other parts of the station’s building were saved through the intervention of the Fire Service.

While no life was lost in the incident, the cause of the fire is yet to be ascertained as at the time of filing this report.

Speaking on the fire incidents, the  Anambra State Fire Chief, Engr. Martin Agbili, who gave separate overviews of the outbreaks, called for more caution and proactive measures from residents of the state, to minimize the alarming rate of fire incident in the state.

While advising the residents to always switch of their electrical appliances when not in use, he also warned against careless bush burning, especially the ones by people leave them uncontrolled and unattended to after igniting it. He further advocated the need for availability of fire extinguishers at every household, office and market place, as part of fire safety measures.

The State Fire Service Chief, while commending the efforts and selfless service of the state’s firefighters and some individuals who offer help in times of fire incidents, also called for timely contacting and notification of the Fire Service in the case of any fire emergency in the state, for timely response and intervention.

“Time of call will always determine the response time. If you call in time, we will definitely locate the fire scene in time to do the needful,” he said.

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