By MALUM NALU
EDA Ranu is reluctant to place fire hydrants around Port Moresby to assist firefighters in cases of emergencies because people tamper with them, says chief executive officer Henry Mokono.
He told The National that the hydrants were vital to firefighters during emergencies but some people did not respect this fact and used the water for their own purposes.
“There have been problems in the past with the fire hydrants,” Mokono said.
“They are specifically for use by the Fire Services, and it is our responsibility to have them in strategic locations where they can be used in times of emergencies.
“The problem we’ve seen over the years is that there’s so much illegal tampering.”
“Sometimes, people are using the water (from the hydrant) illegally, diverting it for their own purposes.
“In terms of coordination, it’s a matter between the PNG Fire Services and Eda Ranu for use when there is a fire or other emergency.”
To address the illegal tampering problem, Mokono suggested that a security system should be put where the fire hydrants were located.
“The problem is people’s attitude. They don’t respect such important infrastructure,” he said.
Mokono said Eda Ranu should not be blamed for the shortage of fire hydrants in the city.
“It’s not an Eda Ranu problem alone but a communal problem or issue,” he said.
“If people respect those installations and leave them alone, then it’ll go a long way in addressing major fires and disasters in the city.”
PNG Fire Service superintendent community safety Gabriel Paulus said there should be one fire hydrant every 100m.
“The Fire Service and Eda Ranu should be consulted (by building contractors) prior to construction,” he said.