by Scott Waide – EM TV, Lae
Public concerns over poor ability of the Papua New Guinea Fire Service to respond to fire emergencies has drawn attention from the country’s highest office.
Prime Minister, Peter O’Neill, who was in Lae today, told EM TV, the government will be putting more money into improving the capacity of the service.
“We want them to be able to deal with floods, bush fires and other emergencies, “ he said.
The prime minster’s comments comes a day after a person living with a disability died in house fire in Lae’s Chinatown suburb. The house fire was one of two fires that happened in the early hours of yesterday.
Mr. O’Neill, says the department of provincial and local level government responsible for the fire services has been given an increased funding and changes should be happening soon.
In Lae city, the fire service has been on the receiving end of public criticisms after a total of 13 reported fires in a space of 24 months. They lack the equipment and the manpower to counter large industrial fires.
Senior officer within the Lae fire service have said Lae does not have trucks that can put out fires on the increasing number of high rise buildings in the City Center.