Fire Risk Mitigation - Eastern Mirror
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Editorial

Fire Risk Mitigation

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By The Editorial Team Updated: Feb 28, 2023 10:50 pm

Several fire incidents have been reported in Nagaland, especially in urban areas — Dimapur and Kohima — in the past two weeks, reducing dozens of houses to ashes, damaging properties worth cores of rupees, rendering many families homeless, and snatching away source of livelihood for some. Barely an hour after the polling for state assembly election concluded on Monday, another huge fire broke out at Mao Market in Kohima, causing panic among public as the multi-storey shopping complex, which houses about 85 shops, mostly retail stores, was engulfed in massive flames and smoke. There was fear of the fire spreading to the adjoining buildings, forcing the authorities of the Bethel Medical Centre located in the vicinity to evacuate its patients to other healthcare facilities. At least six residential buildings, including Sokhriezie Market and a hospital building were affected by the inferno. A closer look at the recent fire incidents in the two major urban settlements in the state will point to some common trends, including the extent of damage. In most cases, multiple houses were razed in a single incident. This does not come as a surprise when houses are built in close proximity to each other, allowing the fire to spread quickly to adjoining areas. To mitigate losses from fire and other natural calamities, safety laws such as National Building Code of India and Model Building Bye-laws should be strictly implemented. Proper town planning is a must for a sustainable growth and to avoid disasters.  

The frequency of fire incidents in the state has triggered one to wonder about the causes of such. The police often point to electrical short circuit in most cases but it is necessary to let the authorities and the citizens know the findings of its investigation in order to enable them take necessary measures. If electrical short circuit is the culprit, the concerned authorities should look for ways to address the issue. The public also should take certain safety measures like proper installation of electrical appliances and inspection of wirings by professionals at regular intervals. Carelessness and negligence by a few can affect many lives. In the meantime, the department of Fire and Emergency Services should always be on its toes. The prompt response from fire stations as far as Dimapur and Chumoukedima in fighting the recently fire in Kohima is laudable. Quick response from the fire department is vital in mitigating damage as every second is precious during an emergency. The government on its part should set up adequate fire stations for specific population as recommended by the Standing Fire Advisory Committee (SFAC) to reduce response time and provide safety gears and modern equipment to fire stations. Citizens should be vigilant especially during dry and windy season. Community involvement is vital in mitigating fire risk and helping victims get back on their feet.

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By The Editorial Team Updated: Feb 28, 2023 10:50:54 pm
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