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4 firefighters get severe burns during bid to control blaze at Ludhiana textile factory

EIGHTH INCIDENT IN CITY Balls of flame during a blast leave sub-officer and 3 firemen injured; they are under observation for next 72 hours at CMCH; five firefighters also receive minor injuries after shutter falls on them

punjab Updated: May 11, 2017 20:07 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
garment factory,Ludhiana,fire
Fire fighters trying to douse fire at the factory in Vijay Nagar on Thursday. (Gurminder Singh/HT Photo)

In the eighth such incident in the city, four firefighters sustained severe burns while five others suffered minor injuries when they were attempting to control a blaze at a textile factory in Vijay Nagar near Cheema Chowk on Thursday morning.

Sub-officer Hazura Singh (56) and three firemen, Lovlesh Sood (27), Naresh Kumar (33) and Saudagar Singh (52), received burn injuries on the back, limbs and other parts of their bodies from large balls of flame that erupted due to a blast inside Mallika Textiles. The fire wing was conducting an operation to control a fire on the second floor of the building at around 7.15am. Assistant divisional fire officer (ADFO) Surjeet Singh, who was present at the spot, claimed that the blast occurred in a diesel boiler and an LPG cylinder. He also added that the factory lacked fire safety arrangements.

The four firefighters were rushed to Christian Medical College and Hospital (CMCH) by another firefighter Rajinder Kumar in the ADFO’s vehicle. Doctors said Hazura and Lovlesh suffered 40 % burns, Naresh 30% and Saudagar 20 %. Their condition was stable but the next 48 to 72 hours were crucial, they added.

People watch as the fire tenders try to douse the fire. (Gurminder Singh/HT Photo)

Besides, five other firefighters including leading fireman Manohar Lal and firemen Gurcharan Singh, Inderpreet Singh, Manpreet Singh and Pardeep Kumar sustained injuries on their hands and arms. Manohar Lal said they were left injured when a shutter of the factory broke and fell on them. Some firemen were already working inside the building at that time.

They immediately lifted the shutter to save the lives of other firefighters who were at work inside. These five firefighters were administered first aid on the spot in an ambulance. After treatment, they resumed their work to douse the flames. An injured Inderpreet was spotted breaking a portion of the back wall of the factory to drive the smoke out.

A spate of fire incidents in the city in the last three weeks have done nothing to wake the municipal corporation from its deep slumber. The civic body has failed to ensure safety kits for firefighters despite repeated requests.

MC commissioner Jaskiran Singh, who went to meet the injured firefighters at CMCH, said, “I met the injured firefighters and they are out of danger. We are providing them the best treatment here. They will remain under observation for the next 72 hours as it will be ascertained how deep the wounds are. I appreciate their bravery in fulfilling their duties.”

  • April 26: Fire at a factory’s godown near Cheema Chowk claims three lives, including that of an eight-year-old girl’s.
  • April 29: Textile factory gutted in Daulat Colony near Basti Jodhewal.
  • April 30: Fire at cycle and parts factory on Gill Road.
  • May 1: Fire at yarn factory on Rahon Road.
  • May 5: Two factories and five godowns gutted near Cheema Chowk.
  • May 8: Fire at dyeing unit near Transport Nagar.
  • May 8 (night): Fire at forest area near Tiger Safari.

Sources said the blasts were heard in the vicinity. They claimed that a guard was sleeping on the third floor of the factory when the fire broke out, but he managed to escape through the roof of the adjoining building. The power supply was also disrupted after the incident. Articles and property worth lakhs were reportedly gutted.

Fire officer Rajinder Sharma said 15 fire tenders were rushed to the spot. The exact cause behind the fire was yet to be ascertained. “Four of our firefighters are admitted at CMCH while five have suffered minor injuries. We were informed about the fire at 6.40am, and it was doused by 12.30pm,” he added.

Mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria, who also met the injured firefighters, said, “I assure that we will purchase required safety kits and equipment for firefighters.”

First Published: May 11, 2017 10:14 IST