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Lagos State implements new fire safety protocols in markets to prevent future incidents

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Overview of Lagos’ new safety measures

The Lagos State Fire and Rescue Service has announced a comprehensive initiative to enhance fire safety in the state’s markets.

This action comes in the wake of a devastating fire at the Lagos Island Market.

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu has been actively involved, conducting on-site assessments and directing immediate enhancements to safety protocols.

According to Ololade Agboola, Deputy Director of Public Affairs, the government will enforce stricter building controls and fire safety standards to safeguard public spaces.

Margaret Adeseye, Director of the Lagos State Fire and Rescue Service, detailed the new safety strategies, which include the appointment of Fire Safety Marshals for all market buildings, mandatory fire extinguishers in each shop, and regular inspections of electrical installations.

The plan also calls for the enforcement of storage regulations and the installation of advanced fire detection and suppression technology to prevent future tragedies.

Government and community responses

In response to the frequent fire incidents, Governor Sanwo-Olu has issued directives for stricter compliance with building codes and more vigorous enforcement by the Ministry of Physical Planning and permit agencies.

His Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Gboyega Akosile, conveyed the governor’s determination to address the root causes of these fires, emphasising the need for stricter controls and accountability: “The Physical Planning authorities are going to be having a difficult time with me over this incident. When I’m done with them, they will come on the streets.”

Additionally, the market’s Iyaloja, Alhaja Morufa Allison, recounted the incident, highlighting how the fire escalated due to illegally stored flammable materials.

She appealed to the government for support for those affected, stressing the need for aid to help recover from the losses incurred.

Continued efforts and educational campaigns

The Lagos State Fire and Rescue Service has not only proposed new regulations but has also stepped up its educational efforts.

They have been actively engaging with the community to increase awareness and compliance with fire safety practices.

This proactive approach aims to empower shop owners and traders with the knowledge needed to prevent fires effectively.

Adeseye stressed the critical nature of these initiatives, citing the high incidence of fires in the area this year: “We have already witnessed 11 fire incidents this year, including market and shop fires, which highlight the urgent need for these enhanced safety measures.”

IFSJ Comment

The Lagos State government’s swift action to implement and enforce new fire safety measures in its markets is a commendable step towards mitigating the risk of future fire incidents.

These efforts reflect a broader commitment to public safety and community resilience, essential for protecting lives and livelihoods.

As markets are vital to the economic and social fabric of the city, maintaining stringent safety standards is crucial for their sustainable operation.

The focus on education and compliance ensures that both the authorities and the community are better prepared to handle fire emergencies, ultimately leading to a safer environment for all.

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