By T. Saye Goinleh
Authorities at the Liberia National Fire Service (LNFS) have disclosed that the entity has just one functional truck available for its operations in the entire country.
The Liberia National Fire Service (LNFS) said it is the only truck to convey water to places in order to combat fire whenever there is an outbreak in Monrovia and its environs, something they say is hampering their work as an entity.
The only functioning fire engine of LNFS
Speaking to reporters recently, the Director of communications at the LNFS, Col. Jassah Garyar also mentioned that out of the total of three fire trucks, the Agency presently has one truck at its disposal to tackle fire disaster in the country.
“This is posing serious challenge to our determination to fight against any fire outbreak and we want to appeal to people of good will to help the LNFS in this endeavor,’’ Madam Garyar signaled
Col. Garyar made the statement during an interview with reporters at her Carey street office in Monrovia.
According to her, because of the inadequacy of fire engines to battle with the situation, LNFS officers sometimes use buckets to quench fire, something she thinks is very much archaic in this modern era.
The LNFS communication officer however, blamed many fire incidents on improper and illegal connections to electric power and the usage of candle light, generators and mosquito coils, among others as the major causes of fire in Monrovia and other parts of Liberia.
She boasted that in 2017, the LNFS was able to combat several fire disasters in the country successfully, thus, more could have been achieved if the agency was able to increase night patrols around Monrovia in order to minimize what she referred to as power theft and illegal connections.
“It is important for Liberians to avoid illegal power connections since the Liberia Electricity Corporation has trained people who are prepared to help them with their connections,’’ she advised.
Col. Garyar however, assured Liberians that the LNFS stands ready to increase her fight against fire and is willing to carry out awareness in communities across the nation to educate people on how to prevent same.
She however hailed President George Manneh Weah for expressing his administration preparedness regarding supporting the LNFS to be effective when he promised to give five fire trucks to the entity in an effort to upgrade its activities.
It can be recalled on May 4, 2018, the Liberian leader promised to support the Liberia National Fire Service (LNFS) in getting to be powerful and effective and pronounced that government would give five fire trucks to enhance the works of the entity.
The Liberian leader made the promise at the Barclay Training Center (BTC) during the commemoration of International Fire Fighters Day.
In a related development, a prominent Liberian citizen is calling on central government to cancel the Liberia National Fire Service (LNFS) if the government is not willing to support the entity.
Nyanquoi Kargbo, a resident of the Johansson community around the Waterside market area in Montserrado County district #7 said his decision to make such call is as a result of the entity doing nothing to help prevent fire incident in the country.
Kargbo made the assertion over the weekend following the burning down into ashes a two bed room apartment and a provision shop in the community.
“I think the government needs to cancel this whole thing they call National Fire Service, because this is of no use and the country as a whole. Imagine, this place was burning and we called them and do you know what they told us, there is no gas in the truck so if we want the truck to come over we should gas the truck. My brother tell me now what is the work of this group of people to this country, that is why I am calling on central government to cancel them,” Kargbo said.
He indicated that it would be better that the government cancell the entity and try to subsidize the Liberia Petroleum Refining Company (LPRC) fire service, thus, these people are doing very well in the fight against fire in the country.
Kargbo asserted that, God first, the LPRC fire team second in helping to prevent the recent fire incident in the area from crossing to other houses in the area.
The young Liberian is pleading with the George Weah led administration to see the need of the importance of this entity to the country and invest more into it so as to enable them properly execute their functions and mandates.
Meanwhile, the cost of the fire is yet to be established, but some of the residents are blaming it to electrical shock from within either the provision shop or the apartment that led to the fire incident.