Monday, February 24, 2020 | ePaper

Buildings should have built in fire safety measures

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IT is possible to avoid any kind of fire-related incidents by spending only two per cent of the total cost of a building, an internationally renowned Bangladeshi fire safety expert has said. Quoting the expert's comments, The New Nation on Saturday in a report said many big fire incidents are occurring in the country due to negligence of building owners and the authorities concerned about fire safety. "I can say that most of the house owners do not take into account the importance of the fire safety during the construction of a building which causes dire consequences. This is the main reason behind the loss of lives and properties in fire incidents at FR Tower, Tazreen Garments and in Old Dhaka," he said. In the latest incident, some persons were injured and a huge quantity of people's belongings destroyed at Chalantika slum fire in Dhaka's Mirpur area on early Friday. Earlier in most slum fires, there were several fatal injuries.
Usually, electric short circuits are the main cause of fire accidents. The faulty electric wires, loose connections, overloaded electrical plugs and outdated electrical equipment are responsible for the accidental fire.  In the case of garment factory and other industrial fires we have also seen that the emergency staircases in some buildings were not wide enough and also not  outside of the buildings. The narrow staircases filled with flammable materials continued to burn and the residents failed to escape death. Water scarcity in dousing fire is another major problem in city areas. But the city corporations never paid any heed to install hydrants besides the roads.        
Despite capacity building of the Fire Service and Civil Defence, it couldn't be possible to bring down the fatality and other damages in the fire. Most of the city buildings are not fully equipped with the fire safety measures.

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