The Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS) has advised the public to handle alcohol-based hand sanitisers with strict precautions since they can cause fire outbreaks. According to the GNFS, the sanitisers had alcohol content which was sufficient enough to cause an ignition if it came into contact with any source of fire.
The Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the service, Divisional Officer II Mr Ellis Robinson Okoe, in an interview with the Daily Graphic noted that in light of the COVID-19, the alcohol-based sanitisers had become the most preferred product to help reduce the spread. He, therefore, advised individuals to avoid close contact with fire immediately after using those sanitisers.
“After using the sanitiser, you have to wait for some time for the alcohol content to dissolve before getting close contact with fire; failure to do so may result in getting your fingers burnt,” Mr Okoe said. He also advised that the sanitisers should be kept a distance away from any heat condition, stating that the moment it came into close proximity with an open flame, there was a higher chance of causing an ignition.
“There is a need for individuals in the country to be cautious in handling such products, so that as we try to reduce the spread of COVID-19, we don’t also create another problem for ourselves,” the PRO added.
Advice to parents=
The PRO further advised parents to also keep a close eye on their children to prevent them from playing with anything which could trigger a fire outbreak. “Parents are also advised to discourage their children from playing with our emergency lines, which often results in prank calls and deprives other genuine emergency callers from prompt assistance,” he added.
He admonished the general public to avoid multiple chores as they remained home, indicating that any carelessness or negligence could cause a fire outbreak. “There are some people who like to multi-task when they are home. They could do the cooking and ironing at the same time. When you do that, it’s likely you may pay more attention to one and ignore the other, and this is likely to cause an outbreak,” he explained.
Mr Okoe assured the general public of the service’s preparedness to ensure that all lives and properties were protected against fire outbreaks and all other related emergency situations. He said the service was also going to enhance its sensitisation programmes and educational campaigns to increase the awareness of fire outbreak.
That, he said, would help prevent any fire outbreak, particularly in the period when most people had been asked to stay at home.