BMC to make headquarters safer with tips from fire officials

Mar 09, 2013, 07:22 IST | Sujit Mahamulkar

Acting on safety tips provided by the city's fire department, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) will now modify the renovation and restoration plan of its iconic 125-year-old building

The decision comes nearly four months after fire brigade officials submitted their report on the reinforcement of safety regulations at the civic body’s headquarters.


“The fire department’s report has been incorporated in the new plan of the renovation of the headquarters,” said Jeevan Patgaonkar, city engineer of BMC. “One of the suggestions is that fireproof furniture and fire-resistant paint be used. It has also mentioned that corridors and passageways should be kept free of any impediments,” added Patgaonkar.

Under pressure to guarantee fire safety after the Mantralaya blaze in June 2012, which killed three people and injured 16 others and destroyed many documents, Mayor Sunil Prabhu and Chief Fire Officer Suhas Joshi inspected the BMC headquarters and found that its firefighting system needs to be upgraded.

It was also decided to carry out a fire audit at all civic buildings in the city, including administrative wards and schools. The city engineer’s department is carrying out renovation work at the BMC head office and the water, roads departments have already been shifted to the Engineering Hub building located in Worli.

According to plan, all offices of political parties, including the mayor and municipal commissioner’s office will be accommodated at the old building, while all administrative offices would be housed at the annexe of the six-storey building.

The total expenditure of both old and new buildings would be Rs 100 crore, as the old building falls under heritage tag. The fire brigade has also initiated measures to prevent any incidents. “We have started weekly inspection of the structure with regard to safety,” said Suhas Joshi, chief fire officer.  

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