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To protect lives and properties of citizens, CM decides stringent implementation of ‘Fire Safety Norms’ in Gujarat

    In the backdrop of recently occurred fire incidents in the state, Chief Minister Mr. Vijaybhai Rupani has taken several significant decisions on fire safety norms and regulations to protect the lives and properties of the people.

    The Chief Minister has announced that the state government would develop a ‘Fire Safety Compliance Portal’ (Fire Safety CoP) portal for setting a transparent procedure for obtaining online ‘Fire Safety N. O. C.’ for every high-rise building, commercial complex, school, college, hospital and industrial units in the state.

    To give thrust this work the Chief Minister has undertaken a novel initiative of providing employments to young engineers as an Independent Fire Safety Officer. After providing necessary training to the young engineers, the state government would grant them permission for making private practice as the Fire Safety Officer. A panel of these independently practicing private fire safety officers will be formed in towns and municipal-corporations. The appointment of these private fire safety officers would be done as per provision of section-12 of Gujarat Fire Prevention and Life Safety Measures Act-2013.

    As a result of this decision of Mr. Rupani, the service of renewal to get Fire Safety NOC every six months for all the large number of high rise buildings, commercial complexes, schools-colleges, hospitals, industrial units in the state will be available fast and easy. In addition to this, such property owners, occupiers will have the option to avail the services of Fire Safety Officer of their choice. This will also ease the work burdens of local governing bodies.

    The Chief Minister said that we have adopted this approach to enhance the safety and security of the citizens as well as the ease of living. The online-forms, application and certificates have been simplified so that the common man easily understand and apply on his own. However, these certificates obtained for the new buildings will be valid for three years; and renewal certificates will be valid for two years.

    The Fire Safety Officer must make personal visit of such buildings to inspect the fire and safety equipments and measures every six months and after that he must upload his validated certificates in the system.

    For this purpose, after availing the advices and consultations from the fire safety experts, town-planners, and engineers, the state government has developed a comprehensive checklist for fire safety officers for various types of buildings and has also undertaken the process of compiling 200 standard checklists.

    The Chief Minister further stated that Gujarat is a role model state of the country because of its vertical growth in every field of industry, commerce and trade. Because of this, we need buildings for people for living, offices and businesses. The safety from the incidents such as fire and others of the citizens occupying such buildings is primarily of the government.

    Thus, he further categorically stated that the Gujarat government is not ready to accept any damage to the properties or death of people caused by the occurrence of fire incidents. Therefore, the state government is determined and committed for stringent implementation of the fire safety norms and measures.

    He said that fire safety norms start from the design stage of any building. The developer must obtain the permission of the fire safety plan at the time of obtaining construction permission. Fire Safety Certificate will be renewed only after the construction is completed and then the fire safety system will be inspected.

    As shown in the original plan of the building, the certificate has to be renewed only after periodic inspections to ensure that the fire system remains in effective condition throughout the life time.

    Now-a-days all places — small and big cities, towns, villages — have been housing big buildings, thus, it is essential that such fire safety be constantly get inspected and tested.

    For this purpose, Gujarat’s own, The Gujarat Institute of Disaster Management, which is being considered one of the best disaster management institutes in the country, was entrusted with the

    responsibility to develop this course-training and a comprehensive system on fire safety certification, the Chief Minister said.

    Mr. Rupani further stated that Mr. Taneja of GIDM and his team have submitted a report to the State Government on Fire Safety Certificate Approval, Renewal and Trained Human Resources in a transparent, easy and efficient manner.

    In addition to this, the state government had also organized a series of meetings of senior ministers, concerned officers, fire officers under the chairmanship of the Chief Minister and GIDM had also studied the procedures and methods of states such as Delhi, Goa, Kerala, and foreign countries — Singapore, UK. We are going to commence this new system in Gujarat from the next 26th January.

    The promising fire safety officers who want to make their career in the field of fire service in the state will be empanelled as the fire safety officers only after clearance of the strenuous test imparted by Gujarat State Institute for Fire Safety Training. Once this trained fire officer has been empanelled, he will also have to undergo refresher training every three years and keep upgrading his skill and knowledge, he said.

    Mr. Rupani said that the training of fire safety officers has also been classified as per the category of building-houses in the state. They will be trained in three categories namely General, Advanced and Specialist.

    He further added that the youngsters who want to be trained in the general category would not require any experience of the field. However, young engineers who want to undergo advanced training as fire safety officers need five years of experience and those who want to under specialized training will need five to 10 years of experience.

    Such trained youths will be assigned responsibility of the fire safety officers based on their grade, experience and qualifications.

    The Fire Officer will conduct random inspections of the fire NOC of the buildings-issued by the FSO to ensure that all safety parameters have been taken into consideration before issuing the certificate. If any mistake is found in it, the fire safety officer as well as the honorary builder, the government will take penalty-punitive action against the occupant, the Chief Minister added.

    Mr. Rupani further added that this entire system has been adapted to further streamline the existing fire safety regulations and norms in the state.

     

    Source: Information Department, Gujarat