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Schouten acknowledges that a better approach to barn fires is needed after damning report | NOW

Outgoing minister Carola Schouten (Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality) acknowledges that more needs to be done to prevent stable fires. Her ministry will look at whether the rules on fire safety should be stricter, the minister reports after a damning report from the Dutch Safety Board (OVV).

The council concludes that the prevention of stable fires in the Schouten department is not a priority. The ministry would consider the death of thousands of animals in barn fires an “acceptable risk” and see no reason to draw up additional rules to make the barns more secure.

“A better approach to preventing barn fires is needed. I recognize that”, says Schouten in an initial response. “Greater responsibility is being asked from the Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality and we must now take it.”

In addition to stricter fire safety rules, the minister wants farmers who make their stables more sustainable to take measures to make the stables more fire-safe. It is not yet clear what that should look like exactly. Schouten later sends a more detailed letter with proposals to the House of Representatives.

The number of barn fires has remained fairly stable in recent years, but the number of animals that die in such a fire is constantly increasing. Every year, an average of about 143,000 animals are killed in a stable fire.

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Source site www.nu.nl

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