Mar 26, 2012 at 09:53am IST

Fire stations inadequate

HYDERABAD: The state government on Thursday candidly admitted that the number of fire stations, fire fighting vehicles and number of workers were not in accordance with fire service norms.
The situation is more alarming in twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad.
In urban areas there is a need to have one fire station for every 50,000 population within a radium of 10 sq km.
Unfortunately this is not so.
Presently for every 44 sq km with a population of 3.45 lakh there is one fire station, Home minister, P Sabita Indra Reddy said.
Replying to a question raised by MIM floor leader Akbaruddin Owaisi, Anam Vivekananada Reddy and others, she admitted that number of fire stations, vehicles and staff strength are not in accordance with norms of fires services in the state, particularly in city limits.
At present there are about 252 fire stations in the state, of which 13 stations are in twin cities and are working 24/7.
The government has accorded six new fire stations in first phase, that include state assembly, Andhra Pradesh high court, Mehidipatnam, Secretariat, Madhapur and Maheshwaram.
A few more stations have been proposed at different places, including Chandrayangutta, Uppal, L B Nagar and other places.
It is also proposed to open and upgrade eight fire stations under the XIII finance commission grants to enhance fire fighting and rescue capabilities.
There is also a proposal to establish 46 fire stations in market yards.
The budget allocation for fire services department is Rs 185 cr for 2012-13, Of this, Rs 152 cr has been sanctioned for fire services department under non-plan and Rs 32 cr under plan expenditure.
The department has spent Rs 17 cr for modernisation of equipment, the minister added.