Like the upscale 26-storey Jolly Maker building in Cuffe Parade, where a fire broke out last week and gutted the 19th floor, nearly 75% of the high-rises in the city don’t meet fire-fighting requirements, reveals data with the Mumbai fire brigade.
“The onus of ensuring that the high-rises comply with fire-fighting regulations rests with occupants,” said Suhas Joshi, chief fire officer. “In case of a fire, even if the fire brigade reaches the spot in the minimum response time, it would be difficult to undertake a rescue operation without the basic equipment [that a building is expected to have].”
“We haven’t received half-yearly audit reports from any residential buildings this year,” Joshi said.
Data shows that of the 1,096 high-rises inspected this year, 803 did not meet fire-safety regulations. The fire department sent non-compliance notices to 803 buildings, in response to which 215 high-rises submitted a compliance report; four societies have been prosecuted.
PS Rahangdale, deputy chief fire officer, said action would be initiated against high rises that don’t respond to notices after 120 days. “Once we get replies, we will conduct another inspection and initiate prosecution against those who flout norms,” he said.