Kalbadevi blaze fallout: Online fire audit plan to be revived?

  • Vaishnavi Vasudevan, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
  • Updated: May 23, 2015 19:56 IST

An online system that holds information about every building’s fire-readiness, first proposed two years ago, could now be revived in Mumbai.

The deaths of three senior fire officers in the recent Kalbadevi fire has prompted the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation to bring the project back on track.

The proposed software will be able to keep a record of the fire-fighting systems at all residential and commercial buildings. Further, as the software requires to be constantly updated, fire inspectors will check a set of buildings in their area every day, and upload the status online. This status can be tracked when required.

For a building to abide by fire safety norms, it must install fire extinguishers, risers, sprinklers and fire alarms, and also have broad access roads.

“An inspector assigned for a building will have to upload a picture of compliance or non-compliance of norms as proof. A checklist of a fire-fighting system of every inspected building will be available on the software. If a building falls short of the standard, a notice and time period will be issued, after which the fire brigade department will re-inspect the building,” said PS Rahangdale, chief fire officer.

“This system will help bring more transparency and accountability, and ensure all buildings in the city are fire-proof,” he said.

The software will send a notification mail to both the inspector in charge and the society office about the deadline to update their fire-safety equipment. If a society fails to comply, a penalty will be levied under the Fire Prevention and Safety Act. Civic officials said a tender to appoint a contractor to design the software is likely to be floated within a month.

“IIT Bombay has submitted a report on how the software could be designed. In a month, we will begin the process,” said additional municipal commissioner Sanjay Deshmukh, who heads the fire department.

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