Earlier this year, NFPA announced the establishment of a Middle East North Africa (MENA) Advisory Committee. The new Advisory group was developed to help diverse stakeholders address the fire and life safety issues that are presenting in the region due to unprecedented growth. The Committee is chaired by Brigadier General Mohamed Al Nuaimi with UAE Civil Defence G.H.Q. The Advisory Committee meets at least twice a year in different locations. This month’s meeting took place in Kuwait with MENA delegate and Kuwait Fire Service Directorate Major General Khaled A. Fahad welcoming the group.
MENA Advisory Committee members have determined that the next step in establishing an effective safety infrastructure in the Gulf region is to ensure better communication between private sector leaders and the Authorities; and to identify the means to facilitate the interactions. The group is focused on getting the design and construction community to utilize fundamental standards like NFPA 1, the Fire Code, NFPA 13, the Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems, NFPA 72, the National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code, and NFPA 101, the Life Safety Code® and other key documents for optimal safety throughout the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), an intergovernmental political and economic territory that includes Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE.
Officials and businesses in the Middle East have expressed a strong interest in working with NFPA to ensure that they are building safely, educating their workforce, reducing loss from fire, and emphasizing fire safety education. This was the impetus for NFPA’s MENA Advisory Committee. Delegates, including representatives from the Civil Defense who are charged with enforcement, are also focused on emerging issues. The Middle East is known for embracing new technologies and innovative design, and NFPA and its technical committee members work hard to address these considerations in codes, standards and research.
The next NFPA MENA Advisory Committee meeting is scheduled to take place in Dubai on January 22nd during Intersec Dubai, where NFPA will also have a presence in the exhibition area at Booth 3-F29.