Friday, August 28, 2009

Safety sanction needed for Ramadan tents

The Gulf Today, 20 Aug 2009

All tents erected in Dubai for serving Ifthar parties to the believers during the Holy month of Ramadan require safety inspection and approval by the authorities.
The tents can be erected only after obtaining a license from the Dubai Municipality (DM). The planning department of the civic body, along with the Civil Defense Department in Dubai, has sketched a set of safety measures and conditions to be followed by those who want to build Ramadan tents.
The municipality has urged all organisations, companies or individuals to apply for the license to set up a Ramadan tent, so the Civil Defence Department officials can inspect and ensure their safety aspects and precautionary measures.
“The Civil Defence Dept will give a safety approval on complying with safety regulations, followed by a temporary Ramadan permit issued by DM's Planning Department,” said a senior DM official.
Dawood Al Hajeri, Director of the Planning Department at DM, said, “As the running of Ramadan tents without the authorities’ approval illegal, the tent operators will be subject to the stringent penal actions, including prosecution in the events of fire or any other accident.”
“The safety requirements have been drafted in order to protect the life and property from fire hazards during the Holy Month. The regulations vary depending on the type and size of the tents as well as the material used and purpose. The tents should have sufficient space, width and height for the convenience of visitors,” he added.
According to him, the interior fabric of the tents should be sprayed with flame-resistant liquid, and a four metres distance must keep from other Ramadan tents or buildings.
“Air conditioners should arrange 1.5 metres away from the tent, and a hose to pump cooled air into the tent should fix. The safety regulations included fire extinguishers at clear and visible locations in the tent, more than one exit and a clear passage in case of an evacuation,” pointed out Al Hajeri.
Companies that erect tents have to keep all possibilities in mind, and be aware of the fact that accidents can happen.
Dubai Municipality has issued circulars to all establishments reminding them about the regulations in Ramadan tents and urging them to seek proper permission.
“We already have a lot of people who approached us enquiring about the procedures,” said Hajeri.

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