Maharashtra celebrates Fire Service Week to raise fire safety and evacuation awareness

Martyr's Day is celebrated annually on May 1 to remember the brave firemen who gave their life protecting others and their communities


Mumbai : On National Fire Service Day (14 April), India’s fire brigades, fire departments, municipal corporations, industries, government offices, and others pay tribute to the 71 firemen who lost their lives in the Bombay Port fire in 1944. Martyr’s Day is celebrated annually on May 1 to remember the brave firemen who gave their life protecting others and their communities. The primary objective of the week is to test the level of public readiness in the event of a fire.

One level 4 call (major fire), one level 3 call (medium fire), twelve level 2 calls (also medium fires), and twenty-six level 1 calls (small fires) were reported in Mumbai in 2022. Fire safety and evacuation procedures are prioritised by the government in light of the tragedy that occurred in Mumbai and other developing cities in Maharashtra. Fire evacuation lifts are recommended for all new buildings in Maharashtra with a height of 70 metres or over by the state’s Energy Department in July 2022.

This year, on the occasion of Fire Service Week, Chief Minister Eknath Shinde of Maharashtra addressed the state. On the occasion of Fire Service Week, he expressed his gratitude to the firemen throughout the world for their selfless service in protecting people’s lives and property. Firefighters’ dedication and selflessness are quite inspiring. Fire safety and evacuation risks have grown alongside the expansion of our built environment, yet the fire brigade has never failed to protect the public. A forward-thinking move, the Maharashtra Energy Department has issued a circular encouraging the installation of Fire Evacuation Lifts in high-rise structures. It will save time and effort for fire rescue personnel during evacuations. The Maharashtra Energy Department has issued rules and regulations that must be followed in order to ensure adequate readiness to respond to fire situations. With just a little bit of awareness on the part of citizens and infrastructure builders, Maharashtra may become a state free of wildfires.

“The joint efforts of the citizens and the fire department can only make the city fire free,” Mr. Sanjay Manjrekar, Chief Fire Officer of Mumbai, remarked in reference to the Fire Brigade. Mock drills, awareness programmes, talks, training, demonstrations, etc. are just some of the many ways we aim to raise public awareness about fire safety throughout the year.  During fire service week, we hold annual awareness and fire safety camps to educate and instruct the general public on proper safety procedures. Recent high-rise fires in the city highlight the need of having escape plans ready. After receiving clearance from the Honourable M.C. sir, the “Fire evacuation lift” design was put into action in 2018. In the event of a fire, this will aid both the people and the firefighters in the orderly evacuation of the building. Millions of lives can be saved in fire incidents if people are properly trained and equipped to evacuate. Assist us in assisting you!

The industry expert Dr. Vikram Mehta, MD of SPARTAN Fire Evacuation Lift said, “It’s not possible to imagine the hardship of Firefighters. They are real superheroes who fought for the life of others. In recent years the rising numbers of high-rise constructions have made the job of firefighters riskier. As they have to walk through stairs on higher floors with 25 to 30kg weight to douse the fire and evacuate people during fire emergencies. The fire evacuation lift is an effective solution for firefighters to reach high floors faster and for people to have a safer living in high-rise buildings. It’s time to save our saviors (Firemen).”

This year’s theme is “Awareness in Fire Safety for Growth of National Infrastructure (AGNI)”. All the fire brigade departments of Maharashtra are ready to conduct awareness programs and training programs for civilians to make them self-sufficient to fight fire.

Devendra Potphode, Chief Fire Officer of Pune, said, “Adhering to fire safety regulations and norms is not just a legal obligation, but a moral responsibility for all citizens, builders, and developers. Let us come together and prioritize the safety of ourselves and our community to make Pune a fire-free city.”

Vijay Rane, Chief Fire Officer CIDCO, said, “It is essential to educate the society about regular fire safety rather than limiting the fire week only to the week itself. Fire safety is a joint responsibility of the citizens and the fire department. Similar to the “Clean India” campaign, the “Fire Safe India” campaign should be considered.”

Samadhan Devare, Divisional Fire Officer Thane, said, “Every year we do training and awareness programs to educate people on the subject of fire safety and evacuation. Our efforts are to make sure every high-rise building in Thane is safe. The Fire Evacuation Lift for the high-rise buildings is a relief for the firefighters as it helps them in faster and safer evacuation. Firemen can reach higher floors faster and douse the fire on time before it turns into a blaze. The support of societies, builders, developers, and civilians will make the city safer.”