A second Girls’ dormitory at the Wa Senior High Technical School (WASECTECH) in the Wa Municipality has been guttered by fire, bringing the recorded cases to two within 24 hours.
The fire, which started at about 20:19 hours on Monday, January 23, 2023, was recorded after a 10-room-one-storey dormitory for girls in that school was razed by fire on Sunday, January 22, 2023.
Divisional Officer Grade One (DOI) Mr Eugene Asa-Gyekye, the Deputy Commander of the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS), Upper West Region, said the incident on Monday occurred almost at the same time it occurred on Sunday.
The two separate disasters destroyed the property of the occupants, which include books, food items, mattresses, and clothing, as well as their beds. The damage is estimated at thousands of Ghana Cedis.
A visit to the scene by the Ghana News Agency (GNA) revealed that the affected students were picking up the few pieces of their property that were salvaged by the GNFS.
Some of the affected students who could not endure the trauma, collapsed and were rushed to the Upper West Regional and the Wa Municipal Hospitals.
At about 09:10 hours when the GNA visited the Wa Municipal Hospital, 15 students were on admission.
The damage caused by the fire would have been dire without the timely intervention of the personnel from the GNFS.
“Around 20:19 HRS we had a distress call so immediately we were dispatched to the fire scene,” ADI Asa-Gyakye explained.
“When we got here one block was engulfed by the inferno … we attacked the fire from left and from the right. We prevented the fire from spreading to the other blocks.”
He urged the leadership of the Ghana Education Service in the Region to ensure the provision of fire hydrants in schools for constant availability of water to help ease the work of the GNFS in such incidents.
In an earlier interview with the GNFS on the fire incident at the school, it raised concerns about the design and construction of some storey buildings in some Senior High Schools in the Municipality, saying there were no provision for adequate staircases for easy escape in times of emergency.
Assistant Divisional Officer Grade One (ADOI) Mr Iddrisu Imran, the Wa Municipal Deputy Commander of the Ghana National Fire Service, expressed worry about the non-adherence to the advice of the GNFS in the design and construction of public buildings, such as school facilities.
He recommended the provision of fire hydrants in second-cycle institutions that had running water as well as fire extinguishers to help ensure timely intervention in case of a fire outbreak.
The causes of the fire outbreaks at the school were yet to be established.
The school authorities declined to speak to the media on the incidents when they were contacted on Monday night.