The Volta Regional Fire Service has locked up some major electronic appliance outlets in Ho and Sogakope over lack of fire certificates.

A swoop led by Mr Richard Bisimpo, Regional Fire Safety Officer, in collaboration with the Police, closed down branches of retailers, including Class House Electronics and Victor Electronics for their inability to produce fire certificates for their premises.

The Officer told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) that the visit was the fourth in an attempt to get the outlets to acquire and to renew the certifications.

He said the shops would remain closed until the required standards were satisfied.

The team also visited the West African Football Academy (WAFA) training facility at Sogakope and inspected fire hydrants, water distribution systems, and fire alarms.

Some petrol stations in the South Tongu District were also examined on maintenance and use of electric power systems.

Mr Bisimpo said electronic appliance retailers were key targets due to the fire susceptibility of their products, and must meet the standards on fire prevention and safety.

He expressed concerns over the low level of compliance in the Region, and said the exercise was a “wake up call to all who are aware that the fire certificates are necessary but are not acquiring them.”

Mr Bisimpo asked managers and operators to consider the importance of fire certificates, saying it helped ensure adequate preparation against fire outbreaks and other emergency situations.

“The fire certificate details provisions for fire incidents, and includes extinguishers, hydrants, emergency assembly points, smoke detectors and alarm sounders.

“Businesses without fire certificates are killing the nation,” he said.

The Officer further advised that emergency assembly points were marked clearly, and said the Fire Service was available to offer training sessions on handling emergencies for staff.