Pune: The Khadki Cantonment Board (KCB) had only one fire extinguisher van for the past two decades. Hence, it became difficult to attend to emergency situations. Recently, the KCB purchased a new fire extinguisher van and will also appoint permanent firefighting personnel.
On April 12, two cars belonging to a local jeweller had caught fire. The KCB’s fire-extinguisher van could not reach the spot in time. Commenting on it, Senior Health Superintendent BF Naik said, “The fire extinguisher van was not able to reach the place, as the van was in Kasarwadi handling another fire incident.”
He said, “Now the Cantonment has a new fire-extinguisher van. Till now, we had only one van. So, there will be two fire extinguisher vans available with us. The new van is equipped with advanced facilities, which can douse major fires. Moreover, the cantonment will be hiring 28 permanent firefighting personnel. Of these, three will be drivers working in three shifts.”
Naik said the cost of the van is Rs 67.96 lakh. The van will be operational within a month and firefighting personnel will also be hired.
Abhay Sawant, elected Vice-President of KCB, said, “This particular issue was highlighted several times in board meetings and personally with the cantonment higher authorities but the board did not pay attention to it. There is only one van, which is semi-functional and cannot serve its purpose in case of a fire. Also, it does not have the necessary equipment. Now, the Cantonment has purchased a new van and will also hire firefighting personnel. We hope everything will go smoothly.”