Nagpur: If a fire tragedy like the one at Delhi’s hotel were to occur in a Nagpur hotel, it may lead to a major disaster as the majority of hotels lack adequate measures to avert such accident, Chief Fire Officer (CFO), Rajendra Uchake told Nagpur Today on Thursday.
It’s been two days since an early morning blaze in a five-storey, 46-room Karol Bagh Hotel left 17 people dead on Tuesday. The fire at Hotel Arpit Palace, which broke out on the first floor around 2.30 am, travelled upward and quickly turned the establishment into a death trap, with a majority of people dying of suffocation.
In the aftermath of the fiery tragedy, Nagpur Today visited city fire department office to take an overview regarding the fire safety measures in city based hotels. The finding is distressing as the lack of adherence to fire-fighting norms in most hotels in the city makes them vulnerable to fire hazards and would ultimately make rescue difficult, Uchake said.
In the year 2018, the Fire Department conducted inspection at 50 hotels in the city and discovered that several hotels were lacking adequate steps to avert a fire accident. 31 hotels were issued a notice for violating Section 6.2 of Fire Safety norms; total 21 hotels were served water and power snapping notices, last year.
“Several fire safety norms laid down by the Fire Department for hotels, which are normally full of people are either violated or never followed,” CFO stated and added, “The hotels are required to have fire safety equipment like extinguishers, sprinklers, water tank on the roof and smoke detectors and the rules state that exit routes should be free and organized, however most norms are not followed by the hotel owners, on the pretext of their building is old and as per the Section 6 of the Fire Safety Amendment Act 2008, there is no such provision regarding implementation of safety system.”
The CFO also asserted that, though the Fire Safety Act relaxes old hotels to implement contemporary fire safety system they should satisfy the old safety norms set by the fire department.
By Shubham Nagdeve