MUMBAI: In a surprise fire brigade inspection of 193 buildings in Mumbai, major fire safety norm violations were found in almost 60% of them, some of which are prime residential and commercial structures in Colaba, Marine Drive and Bandra. Compliance notices have been served on the buildings.
The drive was conducted from September 23-October 4. In all, 114 buildings were found with fire norm violations, the commonest being unsealed electrical ducts, expired extinguishers, and non -functional equipment like sprinklers and fire alarms. Also, encroachments were found in refuge areas, and additions or alterations found on and under staircases.
Notices were also issued for violations that do not appear to be very serious, but whose compliance can make a great deal of difference during emergencies. For example, at Bhoomi Park Phase III, Malad (West), security guards in the N wing were found to have not been trained to operate fire extinguishers and fixed fire-fighting equipment; neither was form B submitted (the document, certifying that fire-fighting systems are functional, needs to be submitted every six months).
At Viceroy Park, Kandivali (East), portable fire extinguishers were absent from crucial spots and the terrace was found locked. The same violations were noted at Rushi Heights, Goregaon (East). It seems no lessons have been learnt at Rushi, where a fire broke out on the 23rd floor in September.
Chief fire officer P Rahangdale said the fire brigade conducts regular inspections, but surprise drives are necessary. “Municipal commissioner Ajoy Mehta ordered the fire brigade to conduct this drive. Therefore, 65 nominated fire officials from our inspection cell went all around the city for surprise checks. Where deficiencies were found, notices were issued under the Maharashtra Fire Prevention Act. We plan to undertake such special drives every three months,” he said.
Credits ET Realty