Fire safety remains a challenge with high-rises mushrooming across the city. To tackle the problem, the Karnataka State Fire and Emergency Services is set to procure a 90-metre hydraulic Aerial Ladder Platform (ALP) that will be able to reach the 35th floor of a high-rise.
“We have called for global tenders. The last date of submission is January 6. We must ideally get it by the end of the year,” said Sunil Agarwal, ADGP, Fire and Emergency Services, adding that it is expected to cost around ₹20 crore.
At present, the tallest ladder that the department has is a 54-metre ALP. “There are two 54-metre ALPs in the city, and one each of 32-metre in Mangaluru and Hubballi. The 90-metre ALP will have a collapsing ladder,” said Mr. Agarwal.
ALPs are extremely useful to not only fight fires in tall buildings but also for rescue operations. “They can work on fuel, electricity and also on batteries,” Mr. Agarwal added. The ALP will be attached to a huge water bowser, and water can easily be pumped up till 90 metres.
According to senior officials, the 90-metre ALP will be one of the tallest in the country. “It will cover almost all the high-rise buildings in the city,” said a senior official.
Any building above 15 metres is considered as high-rise according to the National Building Code.
B.K. Hamppagol, former Deputy Director (Technical), Fire and Emergency Services, said that the number of ALPs is insufficient, given the rate at which Bengaluru is expanding. “The city needs at least 6 ALPs, which needs to be located across the city,” he said.