The Ministry of Interior, represented by the General Command of Civil Defense, called on school bus operators to install smoke detectors inside them, stressing that it is a necessity to reduce fire accidents that may occur, as well as the need to educate students on how to use fire extinguishers.
On the other hand, the standard specification for safety requirements in school buses, which was approved by the Council of Ministers, last year, obligated school bus operators to install fire extinguishers, and to develop a mechanism for self-extinguishing technology before the fire spread and spread to other parts of the bus, in order to prevent accidents caused by the outbreak of A fire in the engine room of the school bus, as well as providing a safety system for fuel tanks and protecting it with a solid metal cover, and placing a first aid box in a clear place.
During the past years, the country witnessed fire incidents that broke out in school buses, whether while transporting students, or when they were parked and empty, without recording any injuries, the most recent of which was an accident in 2019, when a fire broke out in a school bus on the Kalba line, and led to the burning of the bus. Almost completely, without any injuries among the students, who were rescued, and their access to the school was secured, and the competent authorities immediately dealt with this emergency incident.
The General Command of Civil Defense in the Ministry of Interior recently launched an awareness campaign entitled “Our students are our future”, which includes the initiatives “Our students are a trust” and “Safety in school buses”, in conjunction with the start of the new school year, and within the framework of implementing precautionary measures and safety requirements. prevention in educational facilities, and provision of a safe and accident-free learning environment.
The Commander-in-Chief of Civil Defense at the Ministry of Interior, Major General Dr. Jassim Muhammad Al-Marzouqi, said that the “Our Students is Our Future” campaign is being implemented in cooperation with the Ministry of Education, to enhance the values of responsibility and adherence to safety and prevention requirements for school students.
He pointed out that the sub-campaigns of “Our Students are A Trust” and “Safety in School Buses” aim to raise awareness and introduce safety procedures in the school environment and on school buses, train bus supervisors on first aid procedures, and ensure that bus floors and lanes are non-slip. And covered with a non-combustible layer, and the necessity of installing a smoke detector on the school bus, and educating students on how to use fire extinguishers, in order to achieve the highest levels of safety and civil protection, and to preserve lives and property.
For its part, the Abu Dhabi Civil Defense launched the “Our Students is Our Future” campaign, with the aim of introducing bus drivers, supervisors and students to the safety conditions to be followed, and how to deal with them, until the arrival of the initial response teams.
She urged school principals and those responsible for their buildings to ensure the security and safety procedures, the validity of smoke detectors, firefighting equipment, safety and evacuation plans, and the need to check and maintain manual fire extinguishers and firefighting boxes, and ensure their work and readiness.
She stressed that she is strengthening her efforts to spread preventive awareness towards educational institutions, introducing preventive measures and measures to be followed by school administrations, and giving awareness lectures to students, to instill principles and guidelines for safety and prevention in them, to create a conscious generation aware of the risks surrounding it, and to form positive attitudes towards commitment. The rules of prevention and safety at home, school and the road, and strengthening their abilities to act properly in emergency situations.
The campaign aims to educate Department of Education and Knowledge employees, teachers, safety supervisors, nursery students, schools and universities and bus drivers, about the preventive requirements to enhance safety from fire hazards.
Technical equipment installation
The UAE standard specification for safety requirements in school buses, which was approved by the Council of Ministers last year, included five additional technical requirements that were included, so as to ensure the highest levels of safety and security for students and students, when traveling by bus, ascending to it, and disembarking from it, as well as when they are on board. .
Based on this specification, school buses are obligated to install technical equipment, enabling schools, supervisors, drivers and traffic officers to follow the bus and students, in the context of maintaining their security and safety, and obligating the installation of systems in buses that alert drivers and supervisors when students forget on the bus after students leave .
The UAE standard also obligates bus operators to take some procedures, such as the operating life of the bus, where the regulation specified that it does not exceed 15 years, and it may be extended if a comprehensive renewal is made on it, with a maximum of five years. And providing the bus with a means to limit the maximum speed to no more than 80 km/h, to ensure the safety of students.
The UAE standard specification “vehicles – safety requirements in school buses” prohibited the possibility of opening the school bus window for more than 20 cm horizontally or vertically, and to provide a manual means to control the opening of doors from the outside in emergency situations, and other conditions for the materials from which the windows are made. So that it provides the greatest degree of protection for students.