Spotlight on fire safety in high-rise and multi-story buildings
The horrific fire at an apartment complex in Devarachikkanahalli underscored the importance of fire safety, especially in skyscrapers and multi-story buildings. Over the years, the number of apartments in the city has grown exponentially. It is therefore important to ensure compliance with fire safety standards.
To raise awareness on this topic, over a year ago, the Bangalore Apartments’ Federation (BAF) and Beyond Carlton, an organization working on fire safety, jointly launched a pilot project to assess fire safety measures in place in various apartments. About 90 apartments in the city are said to have participated in the self-assessment.
Uday Vijayan of Beyond Carlton said the aim of the pilot project was primarily to educate citizens and educate them on what to do in the event of a fire.
“Most people are indifferent to fire safety; it is a behavioral problem that must change. The pilot was mainly a checklist of all the measures that need to be put in place, such as functional valves, regular fire drills, evacuation plans, etc. “, did he declare.
BAF Vice President Shankar Swaminathan admitted there was a need to engage more with the Apartments on the issue. BAF, he said, hoped to expand the pilot for better awareness. “We had to motivate the apartments to participate in the pilot, as few came out when we launched it,” he said.
Shortage of workers
Vikram Rai, Secretary General of the BAF, said The Hindu that according to the rules, high-rise buildings, including apartments, over 15 meters in height must obtain a fire safety certificate every two years from the fire and emergency services. However, the shortage of manpower for this in the department is a major problem. The ministry had in fact, a few years ago, recommended that the Home Office use professional agencies to assist the ministry in auditing the city’s high-rise buildings for fire.
Karnataka State Fire and Emergency Services Police Director Amar Kumar Pandey said auditing fires was an ongoing process and firefighters were checking many high-rise buildings. through the city.