SINGAPORE - The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) is not letting up on efforts to ensure a safe festive season for all.
As the number of shoppers picks up, it is ramping up fire safety enforcement checks at commercial premises.
Two shopping malls and five public entertainment outlets were inspected on Friday (Dec 14), the SCDF said in a statement on Saturday.
Some of the fire safety violations detected include unauthorised change of use in parts of the premises, faulty exit lights, and obstruction to common passageways and exit doors.
"Such violations pose fire risks and would impede the safe evacuation of people during an emergency," SCDF said, adding that it takes the violations seriously.
Offenders can be fined up to $5,000 the first time. For subsequent times, they can be fined $10,000 and jailed for a period not exceeding six months, or both.
Major offences, for example starting fire safety works without plan approval, can be punished with a maximum fine of $200,000 or imprisonment up to 24 months.
In its statement, SCDF reminded owners and management of buildings such as shopping centres and hotels to ensure compliance with all fire safety requirements.
Apart from keeping passageways free, fire exit doors should also always be kept accessible for use during emergencies.
Overcrowding in places like discotheques and pubs should be avoided as it would impede evacuation should there be a fire, it added.
SCDF urged members of the public to report fire hazards by calling 1800-280-0000, submitting photos and descriptions to the mySCDF mobile application, or e-mailing SCDF_Fire_Safety_Feedback@scdf.gov.sg.
"Fire safety is a collective responsibility and together we can all help to reduce fire occurrences in Singapore," SCDF said.
A list of fire safety tips from the SCDF can be found in the document embedded below.