Faulty electrical outlets and cigarette butts were the main causes of 232 fires in Dubai this year that caused the death of four people, an official said.
Major General Rashid Thani Al Matroushi, Director-General of the Dubai Civil Defence, said, “Most of the fires were caused by faulty electrical outlets or cables or by cigarette butts. The number of deaths was four this year in villa fires.”
According to statistics, 66 people were injured in the fires due to inhalation of smoke.
Of the 232 fires this year. 215 were listed as minor, nine were moderate and 8 were recorded as serious.
Maj-General Al Matroushi said that serious injuries and deaths occurred in villa fires, not in tower fires, because of the smart systems installed in most of Dubai towers.
“There is no fear [about fires] in towers in Dubai because they have solid systems to extinguish fires compared to villa houses. During the Torch Tower blaze, the flames didn’t spread into the flats because of the smart extinguishing system; they spread outside only,” he said.
The alarm system worked immediately when fires erupted in the towers which helped to evacuate the residents without casualties, he added.
Fire officials are working on a plan to prevent villa fires, including safety systems and using nanotechnology.
According to Dubai Civil Defence statistics, most fires occurred in Al Karama area this year and the average response time to fires was nine minutes.
“We are using smart systems to help extinguish fires as the total number of employees and firefighters is 2,000 personnel, which is a small number compared to the number of buildings and residents in Dubai.”
3pm is crucial
Dubai Civil Defence said this year, 3pm has been the most common time for blazes to start.
Every year, June, July and August witness the most fires.
Tower fires usually happen in saunas, garbage rooms and electrical outlets.
Fires in buildings under construction erupted in caravans and electrical generators.
Villa fires began in kitchens and bedrooms.