A day after a blaze at a hospital in Bhandara killed 10 infants, National Fire Service College Director Ramesh Kumar said fire safety standards were being ignored in sensitive establishments, including hospitals, and the issue requires a lot of attention. There should also be periodic inspections, he said.

Mr. Kumar added that advanced fire safety equipment are needed to be installed in all buildings and have to be properly maintained by trained staff.

Three fire engineers from the National Fire Service College, a Nagpur-based autonomous body managed by the Union Ministry of Home Affairs, are part of the team conducting a probe into the fire in the district hospital at Bhandara, he said.

“We would be emphasising on fire safety angles and how useful the safety equipment were and whether they were working or not, and whether the safety audit of the hospital took place or not,” he said.

The government has passed an Act that these norms should be followed, but they are being ignored, Mr. Kumar said. In most places, even if the fire safety equipment are installed, they are not functional. Even if they are functional, people are not trained to use it, he said. “These are two grey areas that need to be addressed,” he said.

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