A new report has revealed that 2019 turned out to be an extremely busy year for the city’s fire brigade with the highest fire emergencies reported in three years. 

In December, the fire brigade was busy attending to a fire at suburban Saki Naka in Asalpha. The fire took 48 hours to completely diminish which resulted in the deaths of two people trapped inside while leaving multiple firefighters suffocated. 

As per a report, the fire brigade attended to a total of 97 fire instances in 2019. However, in 2017, the number stood at 46, suggesting that fire incidents have increased more than two-fold since then. 

The CFO (Chief Fire Officer), Prabhat Rahangdale said: “The increase in the number of fire calls (or instances) is largely on account of the growth in population and infrastructure in the city. It is a well established fact that as the population grows, it results in a corresponding crunch on the available space. The justle often leads to accidents like fire.”

If it’s any solace, 75 of the fire incidents reported were categorized as Level II or medium fire, while only 15 were reported as Level III or major fires. This is low compared to 2017 when 19 major fires were reported, while 2018 saw 16 major fire incidents. Serious fires made up for 7 of the incidents this year, which is significantly higher than the 2 incidents reported in 2018. 

The report further mentions that 2019 saw the highest number of phone calls from citizens about fire incidents at 16,360. Of these calls, 36 were said to be prank calls while 50 were false reports that came from suspicion upon seeing smoke. The calls reported in 2017 and 2018 were 15,704 and 15,361 respectively. 


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