'KIA geared to tackle fire challenges'

'KIA geared to tackle fire challenges'

The Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) has a contingent of 13,000 fire-fighting personnel for emergency and regular training sessions, said Hari K Marar, president (Airport Operations), KIA.

Speaking on the sidelines of the two-day Airforce Rescue and Fire Fighters Services (ARFF)-VISI conference here on Thursday, Marar said that with these systems in place, the KIA was prepared to meet the growth challenges over the next five to eight years.

Marar said Bangalore had the potential to be known not just as the ‘Silicon Valley’ but also the ‘Aviation Capital’ of the country in the near future.

“Over the last decade, the country has seen tremendous development in the aviation field. It is just that for the last two years many were not able to deliver due to the economic slowdown,” he said, attributing the slow down in the aviation sector to the collapse of one of the largest carriers in India.

“Presently, just three per cent of the country travels by air. India stands at position nine. It is estimated that there would be 336 million national passengers and 85 million international passengers by 2020,” Marar added.

Cletus Packiam, chairman, IAFPA, said that there was a need to continously push the standards in safety measures. The growing size of buildings, he added, was a cause for concern for fire safety.

G B Menon, the oldest known fire fighter, was honoured on the occasion. IAFPA and IAFSSG had jointly organised the event.