NEMA blames water scarcity as fire razes four Lagos buildings

Written by on March 21, 2024

The Lagos zone of the National Emergency Management Agency has blamed the escalation of the fire incident that engulfed four buildings in the Idumota area of the Lagos Island Local Government Area of the state on the lack of a water source.

The NEMA State Coordinator, Ibrahim Farinloye, disclosed this in a telephone interview with PUNCH Metro on Wednesday.

According to Farinloye, the emergency responders were faced with the challenge of water supply that could have aided the effective quelling of the fire, preventing the escalation and the level of damage caused by the fire.

He stressed that there was no water source within proximity of the fire incident, thereby forcing the fire vehicles to go in turn to get water.

Farinloye said, “The major problem we had today was the lack of a water source. We have over 10 firefighting appliances and in the whole of Lagos Island, there is nowhere we can source water. So, each of these firefighting appliances had to go about three to four times to fetch water.

“Julius Berger also had to supply us with 30,000 litres of water. Both the Federal Fire Service and the State Fire Service were on the ground, but there was not enough water.”

While stressing that the Lagos Building Control Agency would assess two of the four buildings affected to determine if they could still be occupied by the traders, the NEMA boss urged the traders to support the government in situating a water source close to the market.

He added, “The traders should be able to help by contributions so that they can drill a borehole or a fire hydrant section close to the market. Also, they should get some people for us who will be trained as fire marshals so that whenever there is a fire incident, these people can quickly attend to the fire. They should also ensure to insure their goods.”

Giving an update on the cause of the fire, the Director of the Lagos State Fire and Rescue Service, Margaret Adeseye, said poor housekeeping on the part of the traders led to the fire outbreak.

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