The National Chief Fire Officer, Dr Albert Brown Gaisie, has called for an efficient collaboration between the service and mining companies for effective rescue response controls.
He has, therefore, directed the Brong-Ahafo Regional Command of the Ghana National Fire Service (2015) to immediately establish joint contingency and simulation exercises with the Newmont Ahafo Mine towards disaster management.
According to Dr Gaisie, the two institutions could collaborate and achieve significant results in rescue missions through resource mobilisation and the capacity building of personnel.
The CFO made the call when he interacted with the management of the Ahafo Mine of Newmont Ghana Gold Limited (NGGL) at the mine’s plant site at Kenyasi Number One, as part of his five-day working visit to the Brong-Ahafo Region.
Dr Gaisie and other officers of the GNFS, were at the site to acquaint themselves with the operations of the multi-national mining company and its laid down safety measures.
He tasked the mining companies to ensure that local communities within their operational areas had knowledge on safety.
This, Dr Gaisie said, could be done when the Ahafo Mine collaborated with the GNFS and trained volunteers in mining communities.
He observed that when mining companies blasted their pits, local communities were highly exposed to basic risks and hazardous materials, and there was the need for the companies to engage and discuss their contingency planning systems with them.
Dr Gaisie advised the management of the Ahafo Mine to develop a hotline for routine communication between the GNFS, the company, and the local communities for urgent response to any disaster.
He urged the company to identify key people in the communities who could be used as first respondents in rescue missions to train them on fundamental knowledge in fire and other disaster rescues.
Mr Joshua Mototi, the Acting General Manager of Newmont Ahafo Mine, emphasised that safety was the trademark of Newmont Ghana, and said the company had prepared and put in place adequate measures to respond to emergency situations at the plant site and in the communities. GNA