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Govt frames new fire safety rules

Bangalore, Jul 23, 2012, DHNS :

Safety inspections, licence renewal of high rises made must

Home Minister R Ashoka announced on Monday that the government has made it mandatory for all high-rise buildings to obtain clearance certificates, after first proving that they have enough fire-extinguishers to tackle emergencies.

The certificate must be renewed once every two years.

Building owners are also required to obtain a No-Objection Certificate (NOC) from the Fire Force Department in the event of changes or modifications to the design of the building.

The measures were taken after the Carlton Towers fire accident which left nine people dead and several injured, said Ashoka.

Previously, there had been no provisions to renew clearance certificates or obtain NOCs.

But concerned with public safety in high rises, the government has amended the building by-laws.

The fire department has also been inspecting high rises in the City to verify that all safety procedures are being implemented. So far, 98 buildings have been inspected, he added.

Sophisticated equipment such as aerial ladder platforms, turn table ladders and motorcycles, which are useful for rescue and fire-extinguishing operations, have been acquired by the department.

Fire-fighting stations are also to be set up in all taluks in the State. Ten stations will be set up this financial year, the minister said.

Fire accidents

As many as 39 people, including 10 from Bangalore, have lost their lives in fire-related accidents in the last six months in Karnataka. In addition, 149 were injured.

These figures include casualties in road accidents involving fire and those who have committed suicide by setting themselves ablaze.

Property-damage, both public and private, is estimated to be Rs 93 crore, according to Ashoka.

According to the fire department, 14,025 calls were made related to fire accidents, across the State since January 1. Out of these, 1,281 originated in Bangalore.

Property worth about Rs 520 crore was saved from damage by fire-fighting personnel.


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