• Tuesday, Oct 22, 2019
  • Last Update : 11:28 pm

Up in flames

  • Published at 12:03 am September 15th, 2019
fire extinguisher
Photo: ABAK HUSSAIN

Fire safety is an issue too important to be left up to chance

Another day, another fire.

This newspaper has repeatedly commented on the lack of adequate fire safety measures in buildings throughout the country, but repeated incidents of fires breaking loose within the city perhaps show that such calls seem to be falling on deaf ears.

Indeed, in a year that has witnessed numerous major fires -- from the Chawkbazar incident to the FR Tower inferno in Banani -- more of such news comes as little surprise; so the latest, a massive fire breaking out in a six-storey factory in Gazipur, may seem like mere background noise at this point to many.

But how did we get here?

The factory in Gazipur, upon inspection, was found to not have been outfitted with any fire-fighting equipment, nor was the building ever subjected to fire drills in a regular manner.

Thankfully, the fire was eventually put out, thanks to the tireless efforts of our fire-fighters -- kudos to them for showing the efficiency that the situation called for.

While it is easy to dismiss these incidents as being the product of poor city planning -- which is indeed one of the reasons -- a more fundamental flaw seems to be callous attitude on the part of building owners in prioritizing safety, and bringing them up to code, which of course, requires them to not cut corners in spending.

Fire safety is an issue too important to be left up to chance, and it is high time we broke out of this pattern, which causes so much destruction and suffering.