#Editorial

Another market inferno!

May 13, 2020, 12:25 PM

A serious inferno on Tuesday morning engulfed parts of Brikama Market destroying several stalls.

The market blaze comes barely two months when similar blaze ravaged Basse Market, URR.

However, the cause of both blazes still remains a mystery. A committee has been set up to probe into the matter.

Many suspected that poor electrical short circuits, which are one of the leading causes of fire outbreaks especially in public spaces, might be the cause.

It is high time authorities look into how our community markets are structured from spacing to electrical installations. Until then, communities will continue to grapple with market infernos, which are costing us dearly.

What is even more worrying is the fact that fire outbreaks in commercial areas seem to be becoming an increasingly regular part of our lives, especially in congested urban spaces.

We also want to call on authorities to make sure there is hydrant around the vicinity of the all market spaces for timely response by fire fighters in event of fire outbreak. Lack of fire hydrants plus ill-equipped personnel would only drag us backwards, thus hampering our economy.

Meanwhile, it is vital for people to adhere to fire safety measures in public markets, and raise awareness on issue relating to market safety. With this and other safety measure would significantly help minimize fire in our markets.

Brikama Market is one of the busiest markets where thousands of people from all parts of the West Coast Region and Cassamance descend on. The scale of businesses and services it attract is having positive trickle-down effect on our economy.

Personnel of The Gambia Fire and Rescue Services stationed at Brikama couldn’t do much to put of the blaze, which prompted call for reinforcement from Kotu Station, who were able to contain the blaze.

Here, one cannot put all the blames on The Gambia Fire and Rescue Services knowing fully well how constraint the institution is undergoing. From working gadgets to mobility, GFRS is seriously handicapped in terms of working equipment that sometimes even result in their poor performance each time they are called to action.

It would surprise many that all these old fire tenders and other gadgets that The Gambia Fire and Rescue Service are using today are donated by Avon Fire & Rescue Service in Britain. Some of these appliances survived the taste of time and are now worn out.

Therefore, The Gambia government should invest heavily on GFRS if the institution is to live up to expectation.

“You know, I’m no different from a fireman. You got to run into a fire no matter how big the blaze is.”

R.Kelly

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