Fire safety to be mandatory subject in BArch course

The Fire and Security Association of India (FSAI) has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Architecture Council of India to offer it as part of the course curriculum for students pursuing architecture. (Reuters file photo for representation)

It will soon be made mandatory for architecture students to study fire safety and rescue aspects as part of their course. The move is aimed at preparing students to be part of the smart city project and related developments.

The Fire and Security Association of India (FSAI) has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Architecture Council of India to offer it as part of the course curriculum for students pursuing architecture.

The FSAI has designed a syllabus for these students and the same has been placed before the Council for approval. Students now study Mechanical Engineering and Plumbing Service as an optional subject in architecture. However, soon, with fire safety aspects also included, the subject will be made mandatory for students to get their degree.

Should the syllabus be approved, students will be mandated to study the subject from 2019. About 60,000 students will study the subject every academic year in the state.

Pankaj Dharkar, international president, FSAI, told DH, "We are moving towards having smart cities. This means, a need to have smart buildings. To construct and maintain these, it is essential to train manpower. This is the first step towards it," he said.

The 120-hour module that students will study as part of the course has been designed by consulting safety experts. "We will also train faculty in architecture colleges to be able to teach students," he added.

The FSAI now has 500 members, who will help students learn the module, according to Prashanth Gururaj, another member of the FSAI. In the sixth semester, students will study life safety, in the seventh, it will be an integrated building management service. While submitting their projects in the eighth semester, it will be made mandatory for students to explain safety aspects as a separate exercise. "Members of FSAI will assess the student projects," said Gururaj.

The FSAI is setting up an experience centre in BMS College in Basavanagudi, Bengaluru, for students to get hands-on experience in the field of fire safety and security. Students can enrol as members of FSAI and get access to the centre.

This will act as a simulation facility and a centre where students can understand career prospects. The FSAI said this could be converted into an incubation centre in future.

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