The Delhi Fire Services (DFS) is set to open fire stations at eight hospitals to quickly respond to fire incidents and prevent casualties, said officials on Monday.
At present, there are only 64 fire stations in the city – most of these are in North and Central Delhi.
The eight new fire stations will be set up inside 500-bed hospitals.
In the last eight months, the DFS attended to more than 50 fire calls from AIIMS, Safdarjung and other hospitals treating Covid patients. The DFS has already set up a mini station at AIIMS and will soon set up more stations in other hospitals.
“We realised that fire cases increased during the pandemic. There were also calls regarding oxygen cylinder leakage, and SOS calls from newly built Covid centres. Though our stations are located at a distance of 3-4 km, sometimes it’s difficult to take fire tenders to crowded hospitals. These new centres will help decrease response time and firemen can act more efficiently,” said a fire official.
The plan for the new stations has been sent to the Delhi government and Centre.
DFS Chief Atul Garg said he and his team have sent the proposal to authorities: “This will help avert many tragedies or even equipment loss which is common during hospital fires. Our teams will have a small office at these hospitals and can easily control fire incidents and alert us in times of a major blaze.”
According to officials, the stations will be built in Satyawadi Raja Harish Chandra Hospital, Maharshi Valmiki Hospital, Deen Dayal Upadhyay Hospital, Bara Hindu Rao Hospital, ILBS, Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, Baba Saheb Ambedkar hospital, and at National Institute of TB and Respiratory Diseases.
“We have already spoken to hospital authorities at AIIMS, and a fire tender has been stationed there. We are in touch with other hospitals and will soon start these stations. Each station will have 1-2 fire tenders, a team of seven firemen as well as water supply, pipes and stairs,” said the officer.
The DFS has more than 250 fire tenders and vehicles across its fire stations and its Headquarters. It employs a staff of over 2,500 firefighters and officials.