EU Ambassador Julian Wilson at launch of Samoa Fire Strategy in Samoa

The Government of Samoa in partnership with the Pacific Community today launched its Fire Reduction Strategy aimed at reducing the number of fires whilst increasing fire safety and awareness across the country.

Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Hon. Fiame Naomi Mataafa officially launched the strategy and explained implementation to reduce the impact of fire will now begin in partnership with the Pacific Community and the Victorian Metropolitan Fire Brigade in Australia.

“We are building on our already existing Wildfire Reduction Strategy to now focus on structural and domestic fires that occur across the country whilst increasing support for our Fire and Emergency Services in times of largescale disaster.  The implementation of this strategy will occur over the coming years in partnership with SPC and our partners at the Metropolitan Fire Brigade in Melbourne, Australia with a commitment to preventing loss of life and loss of infrastructure here in Samoa,” she said.

The strategy was endorsed by the National Disaster Committee and the Samoa Fire and Emergency Services Authority Board. It will directly support the country’s Fire and Emergency Services Authority to better understand the cause of fire, conduct fire investigations with qualified officers, and develop fire awareness programs to reduce the impact of fire and loss of life because of these incidents.

Mr Anthony Blake of the Pacific Community commended the Government for endorsing this work and said “it shows the commitment of Samoa to lead on wide scale disaster preparedness which we know saves lives and protects assets which is critical in small island nations where resources can be difficult to access when needing to rebuild.”

European Union Ambassador to the Pacific, H.E. Julian Wilson supported the launch of the strategy and said “this work shows the commitment of island nations like Samoa to focus on proactive steps towards reducing the impact of disaster at national, sub-national and local levels.”

The strategy was developed by the Disaster Management Office and Samoa Fire and Emergency Services supported by the Pacific Islands Emergency Management Alliance.  This work is part of the Building Safety and Resilience in the Pacific Project (BSRP) implemented by the Pacific Community and funded by the European Union and ACP Group of States.

In addition to the launch of the Fire Reduction Strategy materials to support in disaster preparedness were handed over including a power generator for the National Emergency Operations Centre, 100 firefighting helmets, a Mobile Emergency Operations Vehicle and HF radios to increase communications during times of crisis in Samoa.

Media contacts:
Anthony Blake, BSRP Country Coordinator SPC| Email anthonyb@spc.int   (685) 7797320

Background information:

The ACP-EU Building Safety and Resilience in the Pacific project (BSRP) is a €19.37million project funded by the European Union and implemented by the Pacific Community (SPC).  The project’s objective is to reduce the vulnerability, as well as the social, economic and environmental costs of disasters caused by natural hazards, thereby achieving regional and national sustainable development and poverty alleviation in ACP Pacific Island