02/04/2024 08:20 PM

SEREMBAN, April 2 (Bernama) -- The Fire and Rescue Department (JBPM) will continue to focus on safety inspections on homestays and accommodation centres in conjunction with Hari Raya Aidilfitri in order to ensure the owners of premises have fire safety measures in place.

Its director, Datuk Nor Hisham Mohammad said the inspection will be through the Fire Hazard Elimination (MBK) programme which among other things is due to the current trend of people staying at these places instead of family homes when returning home for the holidays.

"We have inspected more than 4,000 premises so far, with 52 notices issued...the initial approach to inspect such places is to ensure the owners of premises have the minimum fire safety system as required by law," he said.

"The most basic thing is to have fire extinguishers and control of house keys to make it easier for tenants to get out in the event of an emergency. So homestays and accommodation places are indeed one of our main targets to check after the case of the factory which suffered the highest record of losses due to fire," he said.

He told this to reporters after 2023 Excellent Service Award Ceremony and presentation of the 30 Year Service Certificate of JBPM Negeri Sembilan and Melaka to more than 100 recipients here today.

He also advised the public not to do open burning as it would have implications especially regarding personnel and logistics.

"These are among the concerns that people do not see, for example, when personnel are deployed to put out fires, it will take three to four hours and during that period we do not have protection for structural fires in the city, and we will have to ask another fire station for assistance thus causing a late response,” he said.

Meanwhile, Nor Hisham said the JBPM is in the approval stage to enable its citizens to receive the facility of compensation claims through the KWKB fund (Kumpulan Wang Kebajikan Bomba) of up to a maximum of RM25,000.

He said it involved several categories including flash floods, fires and collapsed homes due to disasters. Previously, he said, JBPM personnel were only eligible to apply for flood compensation with a maximum of RM5,000.

"Now we are in the final stages and a decision may be made in June. This aims to protect the welfare of firefighters. In the past, disasters and typhoons were not included," he said, adding that he hoped that all JBPM officers and members would contribute to the welfare fund, unions and firefighters’ cooperatives.

Meanwhile, he said the JPBM has a shortage of about 1,300 officers and members across the country which is one of its constraints so far.

"However, a total of 298 members and officers will join the department at the beginning of June...our total number of personnel is approximately 16,000, with 338 fire stations," he added.




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