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    National

    Fire Outbreak Near Entebbe International Airport Raises Safety Concerns

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    Fire Outbreak Near Entebbe International Airport Raises Safety Concerns
    • September 13, 2023 • 11 months ago

    Entebbe International Airport, Uganda's primary gateway to the world, was engulfed in flames when a fire broke out at the DAS Warehouse located near the airport premises on Tuesday, September 12, 2023.

    The Uganda Civil Aviation Authority (UCAA) promptly confirmed the incident and issued a statement shortly after midnight. In their official announcement, UCAA stated,

    "An incident involving a fire outbreak occurred at the DAS Warehouse located in the vicinity of Entebbe International Airport on Tuesday, September 12, 2023. A joint team of firefighting services is working diligently to contain the raging fire, and the exact cause of the fire will be thoroughly investigated."

    This unfortunate incident has raised concerns about the need to strengthen fire and emergency services at the international airport, as it plays a pivotal role in facilitating travel and cargo transportation.

    Notably, this is not the first time that Entebbe International Airport has faced a fire-related crisis. In 2021, a fire erupted in the airport's fuel tanks area, causing panic among travelers and airport personnel.

    At that time, UCAA attributed the incident to routine maintenance on fuel tank 4, which involved draining remaining fuel segments using a diesel-powered pump. The pump's drainage tube disengaged, causing fuel to spill and igniting the fire.

    This recent fire incident occurred just a week after the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) dispatched a team of officials to conduct an oversight audit of Entebbe International Airport. The primary goal of this audit is to evaluate Uganda's effective implementation of ICAO standards and recommended practices.

    ICAO, a specialized agency of the United Nations, plays a vital role in coordinating international air navigation principles and techniques, as well as fostering the planning and development of international air transport to ensure safe and orderly growth.

    During their visit, the ICAO team held a meeting with President Museveni at Commonwealth Resort, Munyonyo. Although it remains unclear why Works Minister Gen Katumba Wamala led the auditors to meet President Museveni before conducting the audit, the President welcomed the delegation and assured them of Uganda's commitment to the audit process.

    President Museveni emphasized that the Uganda Civil Aviation Authority team should be prepared to learn and make necessary improvements. The audit will encompass a comprehensive evaluation of legislation, organization, licensing, operations, airworthiness, accident investigation, air navigation services, and aerodromes.

    Gen. Katumba Wamala expressed optimism that a positive outcome of the audit would instill trust and confidence in Uganda's airspace among stakeholders. He noted that it could pave the way for Uganda Airlines to operate in destinations like the UK, which has not permitted the national carrier to access its airspace until the audit is completed.

    "If the audit comes out positive, then it will be a chance to operate in the UK. Not only in the UK but also in other areas like China and Mumbai, among others," Gen. Katumba highlighted, underlining the potential benefits of a successful audit for Uganda's aviation sector.

    As the investigation into the recent fire outbreak at Entebbe International Airport unfolds, the scrutiny of safety and operational standards at the facility has never been more critical.

    The aviation community, stakeholders, and travelers are closely following developments in the hope that necessary improvements will be made to ensure the continued safety and growth of one of Uganda's most vital transportation hubs.

    Leave a Comment below about this story


    Guest
    Guest ᛫ 11 months ago
    hope everything will be ok

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