Fire Outbreak Averted at CBN’s Jos Branch

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Seriki Adinoyi in Jos

What would have been another major fire incident was averted yesterday at the Jos branch of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

The fire, according to an eyewitness, started at about 9 .15 a.m. and was contained before it could escalate.

Policemen and the bank’s security outfit were drafted to the scene to prevent miscreants from taking advantage of the incident to loot the office.

The fire, THISDAY gathered, started from an air conditioner installed in the inverter room on the second floor of the building.

However, it was immediately put out by the bank security unit with fire extinguishers and hydrants in the building before the arrival of men of the fire service.

Confirming the incident in a press statement entitled: ‘Minor Fire Put Out at CBN Jos Branch,’ the Corporate Communication Director of the Bank, Mr. Isaac Okorafor said, “About 9.15 a.m., today, Tuesday, April 21, 2020, the fire alarm in our Jos branch was triggered and in line with the bank’s fire drill and protocol, the skeletal staff on essential duty were promptly evacuated from the building to the muster point.

“Our branch controller quickly called the fire service at about 9.19 a.m. However, before the arrival of men of the fire service, the bank’s security unit, relying on information from the Fire Alarm Dashboard, traced the fire to an air conditioner installed in the inverter room on the second floor of the building. They swiftly put out the fire with extinguishers and hydrants installed in the building.”

He added that the affected room has been cordoned off for further investigation, while normal work has resumed at the branch.

“The minor fire has been effectively put out and no damage was done to any records of the bank,” he stated.

The Branch Controller of Jos CBN, Mr. Duniya Yusuf, said the incident did not cause any major harm as staff on duty were promptly evacuated to the muster point, while the fire service brought the situation under control.

He said: “We are under lockdown but still providing skeletal services, especially to provide cash for ATM. There was a fire alarm and a few staff in the building moved out. Because of the thickness of the smoke, we had to call the fire service to assist. After the whole thing was controlled, it was discovered that it was from an air conditioner in the inverter room.”

Nigerians have continued to express concern over frequent fire outbreaks in recent days, with the headquarters of Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), headquarters of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and office of the Accountant General of the Federation as some of the facilities that have so far been affected.