Community-Based Fire Preparedness and Response Strategy

Published: 25 July 2023
Last edited: 26 July 2023

With more than 5,300 buildings in the George Town Heritage City, it is important to proactively prepare the site in reducing the risk of fire incidents. GTWHI is working proactively to provide at least one smoke detector and a fire extinguisher for every building within the World Heritage Site. A fire safety training session was also held under this programme, in collaboration with the Fire and Rescue Department of Malaysia. Participating communities were trained on practical measures to prevent and mitigate a fire emergency (installing a smoke detector, using a fire extinguisher and others).


Since July 2020, fire extinguisher maintenance has been conducted for the first phase Community-Based Fire Responders. The GTWHI team went on house visits to all 50 participants to check their fire extinguishers condition, renew the Fire and Rescue Department’s certificate which is displayed on the fire extinguisher, and understand the issues and challenges faced by them during the difficult times of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Alliance and partnership development
Communication, outreach and awareness building
Education, training and other capacity development activities
Scale of implementation
Phase of solution

Enabling factors

The partnership and close collaboration between the Fire and Rescue Department of Malaysia and GTWHI has allowed the community-friendly design and implementation of this training activity. 

Lessons learned

The aim of the Community-Based Fire Preparedness and Response Strategy is to create awareness for the public on the pragmatic steps in enhancing the safety of cultural heritage from fire. GTWHI has collaborated with the Fire and Rescue Department of Malaysia to organise these capacity trainings for the local communities on effective intervention during fire emergencies, avoidance to fire incidents, and correct approach in using fire extinguishers, among others. Besides learning about information related to fire emergencies, local communities also had the chance to build trust and understanding with the local Fire and Rescue Department of Malaysia and GTWHI.

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