HYDERABAD: As the mercury level shoots up, the fire and rescue service persons are bracing up to tackle fire incidents. The number of calls would go up during summer, fire officials say.
As the season of fire accidents sets in with the onset of summer, the State Disaster Response and Fire Services Department here is hoping for clearances of its proposals regarding setting up of new fire stations as well as procurement of new equipment.
Meanwhile, in the last one month, the state government has sanctioned three new fire stations, two of which are in Hyderabad. While the Standing Fire Advisory Committee(SFAC) constituted by the Union ministry of home affairs prescribes one fire station for a population of every 50,000 persons and a response time of 10 minutes in urban areas, the fire officials maintain that the national average gap between what is required and what is present is a whopping 97 per cent, which could be true to Telangana state too.
At present, there are 93 fire stations across the state and 17 fire outposts maintained by private parties. Recently, the chief minister sanctioned fire stations at industrial estates of Cherlapally, Genome valley in Shamirpet and one in Gajwel. However, a response is awaited regarding a proposal to set up 10 new fire stations in Hyderabad.
The department had earlier identified requirement of new fire stations at Khairatabad, Yousufguda, Medchal, Shamshabad, Amberpet, LB Nagar, Chandrayangutta, Mehdipatnam, Uppal and Trimulghery in addition to 18 fire stations in the twin cities.
C Laxmi Prasad, additional director, Fire Service, Telangana, wishing not to comment on the proposal awaiting clearance, maintained that March to May are crucial months for firefighting as major accidents occur during this time.
“Major reason for fire accidents during this time is electrical short circuits but ultimately it is the rising mercury levels. We are soon going to procure some upgraded equipment for our fighters using funds from the municipal corporation dues from the 13th finance commission,” Laxmi Prasad said. The department, according to him, will soon procure one big rescue equipment vehicle and six small such vehicles. They would also purchase six multi-purpose vehicles.
The number of fire accidents pre-summer this year across the state, is more than the number of accidents recorded in last summer. There is only one rescue equipment vehicle, which is used in case of urban disasters and natural calamities and was procured in 2008. Similarly, multi-purpose vehicles meant to douse fire by using water, foam, dry chemical powder etc are currently available but requires upgradation.