To address the issue of rising fire accidents in the city, AP Fire and Emergency Services Department has started trial operations for its newly acquired Bronto Sky lift (hydraulic platform) that can be effectively used to perform rescue operations and tackle fire in multi-storeyed buildings. A demonstration of the hydraulic platform was done on Monday at R.K. Beach.

Imported from Finland at a cost of Rs.6 crores, the new equipment can reach up to 18 floors (54 metres high). “This is one the latest equipments procured by the department. After Hyderabad, Vizag is the second city in the state to have such equipment,” District Fire Officer S.V. Narasimham told The Hindu.

For wide roads

Weighing 25 tonnes, the hydraulic platform can lift four people to perform rescue operations from multi-storeyed buildings and also turn 180 degrees for easy manoeuvring. At present, the city has buildings up to 13 floors. However, one of the main hindrances faced by the equipment is the city's narrow roads.

“The platform requires broad roads to move. Here, places like One Town Area have very narrow lanes from which the equipment cannot be moved. Also, electric and telephone wires are major obstructions to carry out the operations,” Mr. Narasimham said.

The department is taking efforts to bring out solutions for the initial problems.

One for lanes

The department is planning to get another hydraulic platform that can reach up to a height of 35 metres, which can be taken through smaller lanes in the city.

“Cases of fire incidences in urban localities have increased by manifolds in the past decade. 40 per cent of the cases are from electrical origin and 25 per cent are due to gas leakages. By inducting latest equipments like hydraulic platforms, we hope to address the issue more aggressively and prevent casualties,” he said.

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