The Federal Capital Territory Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) says it has reduced its emergency response time from five to three minutes to reduce casualties and save lives and properties.
Mrs Florence Wenegieme, Director, Forecasting, Response, and Mitigation, FEMA, made this known during a sensitisation campaign to commemorate the 2023 International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction in Abuja on Tuesday.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the sensitisation was carried out at the Bwari Area Council Secretariat, FCT, and the Palace of Esu Sa-Bwaya of Bwari (the Chief of Bwari), Ibrahim Yaro.
The sensitisation with the theme, “Fighting Inequality for a Resilient Future for All” began on Oct. 4 across the six area councils of the FCT.
Wenegieme explained that the three-minute response time became feasible after training community structures to serve as first respondents to emergencies in their various communities.
She identified the community structures as local divers, emergency vanguards, disaster marshals, town criers, volunteers, and other structures like youth and women groups.
She said the community structures have been adequately trained in emergency response through drills and simulations to equip them with the needed knowledge and skills.
The director added that FEMA had equally procured power bikes for the agency officials to navigate the Abuja traffic and reach the emergency scene within three minutes.
Responding, the Esu of Bwari Yaro promised to cooperate with FEMA in driving the disaster risk reduction messages to every household in Bwari Area Council.
Earlier, the council chairman, Bwari Area Council, Mr John Bagaya, said the council has inaugurated its Local Emergency Management Committee to respond to emergencies at the local level.
Bagaya, who was represented by the council secretary, Me Eli Kadanya, said the council had taken proactive measures against hazards to avert disasters.