FG Acquires N5b Aircraft Firefighting Equipment — Sirika
The Minister of State for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika has disclosed that the Federal Government has concluded arrangements to take delivery of an automatic aircraft firefighter simulator equipment worth N5 billion.
Senator Sirika stated this after the builders, Messrs Alpine Metal Tech. Company carried out the factory acceptance and pre-shipment inspection test of the simulator.
The test was carried out in the presence of top government personalities including the Aviation Minister of State.
The pre-shipment test took place in the United Kingdom showcasing the full complements of about 28 possible fire and non-fire scenarios carried out.
The scenarios include cabin fire simulation, cabin smoke, lavatory smoke and the likes.
Other simulation tests include DHC 8 starboard engine, DHC 8 starboard undercarriage, starboard side, CRJ-900 starboard engine, APU, portside, A320 Undercarriage, A320 Port engine, Port Wing, fuel spill burn pit, internal fires among the vast arrays of simulations it can imitate.
Speaking, Sirika explained that the purchase was in fulfillment of the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) requirement for training of firefighters in the airports.
It is expected to enhance capability in saving lives in the event of a fire incident which is its primary objective.
After inspecting the equipment , Sirika said the simulator, which cost the nation about N5 billion, is safety equipment that is key for airport operations.
He said: “Well the focus of the Buhari-led administration in civil aviation is safety and security, this is a component of it.
“We take matters of safety very seriously and President Muhammadu Buhari once he came into office asked us, Ministers, to do those things that would put the nation forward. In aviation, our policy is safety first and security and this is a demonstration of it.
“Before now, we train our firefighters in Cameroon and I found myself approving several hundred thousands in dollars for training in Cameroon and I said this is not the best.
“I applied and got approval to procure this firefighting simulator equipment and he graciously approved, costing the nation about N5 billion and we started it and now it is completed and it’s ready for testing.
“It has been tested in front of us and you have seen it, it’s in perfect working order and condition and we will install it at the Nigeria College of Aviation Technology, Zaria (NCAT).
“Now the impact on our nation is that it would improve our safety fire cover, firefighting as an important aspect of airport operations without which we cannot open our airports.
“The only other simulator I know in Africa is in Cameroon and it is not as up to date, not as automatic or sophisticated, not as hi-tech, not as multi-functional.
“This one can simulate cabin fire, smoke, cockpit fire, cargo fire, undercarriage fire so this multi-functional ”
The simulator which is the first of its kind in Africa is a modern- multi-scenario firefighting simulator.
It is capable of delivering training for different types of operational incidents involving aircraft in the aerodrome and its vicinity.