More lives lost in 2013 compared to previous year
More serious fire mishaps broke out and more lives were lost to fire in the city during 2013 as compared to the previous year.
Statistics from the Fire Department say the number of lives lost to fire mishaps during 2013 stood at 23 as against six who perished in accidents in 2012.
The sharp rise in fire-related deaths has been attributed to a spurt in serious fire accidents, which went up by 50 per cent last year. However, compared to 2012, the year recorded a slight decrease in the overall number of fires.
A total of 36 serious fire accidents occurred in 2012 and the number rose to 53 last year.
During the same period, the number of medium fires rose from 54 to 63. In terms of lives saved by the department during fire accidents, there has been a fall with the fire fighters succeeding in saving four lives last time as against 18 lives saved in 2012.
“More persons died in 2013 as some major accidents broke out and in them two or three people lost their lives at a time.
The severity of the mishaps is worse now. It shows the non-observance of fire-safety measures by most, especially the big businessmen,” said an official on condition of anonymity.
In December 2013, a timber depot was gutted at Musheerabad, resulting in a huge amount of property loss. In the same month, four workers were burnt alive when a pipe carrying hot chemical burst and fell on the tin-roofed shed where they were sleeping at a rubber factory at Rajendranagar.
The amount of property damaged due to fires in the city also went up from Rs.8.04 crore in 2012 to Rs.13.74 crore in 2013.
Officials say the loss due to damage by fire are categorised as small if they are between Rs.100 to Rs.10 lakh, ‘medium’ for those above Rs.10 lakh and below Rs.50 lakh, and serious those above Rs.50 lakh.
The official explained that big industries, godowns and showrooms with electronic goods often catch fire easily due to short-circuits, a major cause of fire in the city.
“Most of those places have uninterrupted power devices (UPS) installed which run through the night. There is a good chance that those devices may malfunction and short-circuit,” he said.