TIMES NEWS NETWORK [ FRIDAY, APRIL 28, 2006 12:30:12 AM]
KOCHI: Increasing requirement of fire-safety officers in the Gulf countries is leading to a rush for fire and safety engineering courses in Kerala. The trend has been observed in the last few years with Middle-East going on a construction spree.
Apart from several private institutions, universities are also running courses in fire safety and engineering. While universities like Cochin varsity have graduation courses, the private firms are offering diploma courses.
The accent of the courses these days has shifted to fire safety and engineering rather than fire fighting as the former offers more job prospects. “There is a huge requirement for fire safety officers, particularly in the area of constructional safety.
No construction in the Gulf countries can start without a safety officer, and for every 10 workers, one safety officer is required,” says MV Thomas, director of the National Institute of Fire & Safety Engineering , which started operations in Kochi in 1992.
NIFE has 3,000 students. To increase job chances in the Gulf, NIFE has tied up with Occupational Safety & Health Administration and World Safety Organisation for offering these US and Europe recognised certificates as an additional qualification.
The Small Entrepreneur Promotion and Training Institute (Septi) at Ettumanur in Kottayam has recently witnessed a spurt in the demand for fire and safety courses. Septi has been conducting entrepreneurial development courses on the topic, says director Peter Mathew.