Accra, April 29, GNA - The Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) is to construct a 3.1 million-dollar fire station at the Kotoka International Airport (KIA) to facilitate response to emergencies.
In addition, GCAA is procuring four new state-of-the-art fire tenders, as well as hydraulic rescue tools to enhance its state of preparedness for emergencies. It is also improving the professional competence and morale of the staff.
Mr Nii Adu Mansa Badoo, Acting Director-General of the GCAA, said this at a passing-out ceremony of 24 recruits, including a woman, of the Rescue and Fire Fighting Service (RFFS) of the GCAA after 14 weeks of intensive basic airport fire fighting training.
"Accidents and the potential risk of fire outbreaks at airports are very real and when they do occur there is the need for an efficient and effective rescue and fire fighting service," he said.
He said GCAA would ensure that the unit was well resourced and regular training and development became its hallmark. Mr Badoo said to maintain the professional momentum of the RFFS Unit, 37 fire officers had been trained in the UK, Singapore and the US, while 38 officers had passed the Institute of Fire Engineers of the UK examination.
He said the GCAA fire operations would not be restricted to the KIA but would be extended to neighbouring communities.
He noted that RFFS at KIA had trained personnel from the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR), Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA), Volta River Authority (VRA), Tarkwa Gold Mines, AngloGold Ashanti, Ghana Air Force and some fire fighters from C=F4te d'Ivoire and Malawi. He said a memorandum of understanding had been signed by GCAA with the biggest aviation fire school in Africa, ERST in Douala, Cameroon, to train its personnel.
Among those present at the ceremony were the Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Mr Stephen Kwanjoe, some members of the GCAA Board, senior officers of the GCAA and officials of the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS).
The overall best award went to recruit fireman Isaac Teye Out, while the Chief Fire Officer's award went to Emmanuel Manneh Keith.