2,600 high-rises violated fire safety norms in 4 years
In the past four years, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) fire brigade department inspected over 5,200 high rise buildings, of which, over 50% were found to have violated fire safety norms.
Notices were served to all 2,600 buildings and though the number is high, chief fire officer (CFO) PS Rahangdale claims that the city is safer than before.
According to data compiled by Mumbai Fire Brigade (MFB), since 2014, MFB conducted random inspections in over 5,200 high rises and about 50% were found to have violated fire safety norms.
These buildings include residential as well as commercial and were above 24 metres, which is usually more than four-storey.
“It is not possible to place a fireman in every high rise. It the developer’s responsibility to make sure that their building is fire safe,” Rahangdale said.
In case of any fire safety violations, the fire department conducts surprise inspections, issues a notice for non-compliance and gives stipulated time to the occupiers or developers to comply with the norms. If, even after that they do not follow the norms then they are prosecuted, following which the court decides the punishment. For now, over 31 cases of prosecution are on with regards to non-compliance of fire safety.
Recently, the BMC also admitted that there are over 55,000 buildings in the city that do not have an Occupation Certificate and so, in such cases, since there is no society formation, the notice is sent to the developer.
According to the fire safety rules, the occupiers or developer have to submit ‘Fire Act B Form’ twice in a year – January and July.
This rule is applicable to commercial and residential buildings, shopping centres, multiplexes, cinema halls, auditoriums, hotels and malls.