Ramesh G Jethwani is a prolific "Letters to Editor writer/columnist, who over the decades has written over a thousand "Letters to editor" and few columns, which have been widely published in leading newspapers in India and in GCC(Gulf countries),These letters to editor/ Columns are a testimony to the power of his ideas,his letters and columns short and precious --have served a very useful purpose in drawing the attention of authorities about important issues concerning society and the governmnet. His father always emphasized the importance of public service Read more

Accidents/Road safety Trauma Services Ambulances Disaster management

Step up fire security

Deccan Herald-19th Oct 2016-L.E

Sir, Apropos "22 killed in Odisha hospital fire" (DH, Oct 18). The tragic fire at the ICU of a Bhubaneswar hospital is just another case to point out that there is an urgent need to revisit fire safety measures at public places... Read More

Step up fire security
Deccan Herald-19th Oct 2016-L.E

Sir, Apropos "22 killed in Odisha hospital fire" (DH, Oct 18). The tragic fire at the ICU of a Bhubaneswar hospital is just another case to point out that there is an urgent need to revisit fire safety measures at public places.

A fire safety audit of all high-rise buildings, commercial structures, shopping malls, IT parks, etc needs to be done.

Effective fire management system with 24X7 supportive passive fire protection personnel should also be set up.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

Raging questions

The Telegraph,30th Oct 2016-L.E.

Sir - The horrific accident at the ICU of a hospital in Bhubaneswar ("Several dead in hospital fire", Oct 18) and at a posh residential building in Mumbai ("Fire at baron's flat kills 2", Oct 19) underline the urgent need to revise the existing fire safety norms. It is important to carry out safety audits of all residential apartments, commercial buildings,... Read More

Raging questions
The Telegraph,30th Oct 2016-L.E.

Sir - The horrific accident at the ICU of a hospital in Bhubaneswar ("Several dead in hospital fire", Oct 18) and at a posh residential building in Mumbai ("Fire at baron's flat kills 2", Oct 19) underline the urgent need to revise the existing fire safety norms. It is important to carry out safety audits of all residential apartments, commercial buildings, shopping malls, information technology hubs and so on.

Since outbreaks of fire in buildings have become a common occurrence in India, teams of firefighters should be kept stationed 24x7 in such places. If that is done, fires can be stopped from spreading.

As part of a larger emergency response mechanism, cities needs well-equipped, well-trained fire brigades. Given the worsening traffic situation in our larger cities, timing is essential for controlling blazes. There must be an adequate number of fire stations in a big city so that fire tenders are able to arrive at the scene within minutes of a blaze being reported. To tackle fires in the higher floors of multi storied buildings, we need hoses with a long reach.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

Sivakasi cauldron

The Statesman--9th Sep 2012-LE

SIR, ~The fire at a cracker factory in Sivakasi once again exposes the inherent dangers of these establishments. They generally fail to comply with basic fire safety regulations. And this is the main reason for the horrendous tragedy in which no ... Read More

Sivakasi cauldron
The Statesman--9th Sep 2012-LE

SIR, ~The fire at a cracker factory in Sivakasi once again exposes the inherent dangers of these establishments. They generally fail to comply with basic fire safety regulations. And this is the main reason for the horrendous tragedy in which no fewer than 38 people were killed. Indeed, Sivakasi’s record in terms of fire safety has always been poor. The place, referred to as “Kutti” or mini-Japan, accounts for 90 per cent of India’s production of fireworks and 80 per cent of the output of matches. A large number of workers are employed in these small and large factories; but in order to maximize profits, safety measures are not followed.

These units are a standing threat to the lives of the poor workers who are the sole bread-winners of their families. Crackers are manufactured after blending inflammable chemicals that are stored in these factories.

The government must immediately commission a fire-safety audit in all the factories in Sivakasi. The town’s fire department should be adequately equipped to cope with such disasters. Medical facilities need to be upgraded accordingly, with a separate ward to treat burn injuries. We are indifferent to such hazards as long as the going is good. Yours, etc.,

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

A dangerous situation

Khaleej times,(Ramesh G jethwani, Bangalore) Filed on September 7, 2012

The blaze in one of the fire cracker manufacturing units at Sivkasi that killed 38 people is another gruesome reminder of dangers of poor fire safety administration and failure to comply with basic fire safety regulations.Sivkasi is also known... Read More

A dangerous situation
Khaleej times,(Ramesh G jethwani, Bangalore) Filed on September 7, 2012

The blaze in one of the fire cracker manufacturing units at Sivkasi that killed 38 people is another gruesome reminder of dangers of poor fire safety administration and failure to comply with basic fire safety regulations.

Sivkasi is also known as “Kutti” or mini Japan; it accounts for 90% and 80% of India’s fireworks and fire matches productions respectively. There is heightening concern that failure to comply with safety regulations will endanger the lives of poor workers who are the sole breadwinners of their families.

There is a dire need for an improved safety mechanism while manufacturing crackers. Government must immediately start fire safety audit at all small, medium and large fire crackers manufacturing units at Sivkasi. The authorities should ensure that all factories have basic fire safety measures in place and Sivkasi’s Fire Department should be expanded and adequately equipped to tackle emergency situations.

It is also disappointing that Indians are indifferent to life threatening accidents/hazards. This attitude must change immediately

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

Kolam temple fire Tragic loss

The Telegraph-20 April 2016-LE.

Sir - It is hard to believe that in contemporary India, numerous lives are lost on account of frequent accidents at major pilgrimage centres ("Fireworks send concrete missiles flying into homes", April 11). The fireworks explosion at the famous Puttingal ... Read More

Kolam temple fire Tragic loss
The Telegraph-20 April 2016-LE.

Sir - It is hard to believe that in contemporary India, numerous lives are lost on account of frequent accidents at major pilgrimage centres ("Fireworks send concrete missiles flying into homes", April 11). The fireworks explosion at the famous Puttingal temple in Kollam was yet another instance that highlighted the indifference of the authorities towards safety norms, especially at places where a mishap can lead to heavy casualties.

In India, incidents such as this one keeps happening, but after a certain amount of time passes, people forget about the tragedies till another one occurs. Few seem to remember the Uphaar cinema fire in 1997 that left 59 people dead. Similarly, in the Kumbakonam school fire in 2004, 94 children were charred to death. About 90 people died in the AMRI hospital fire in Calcutta in 2011. In these accidents, the violation of safety norms led to loss of lives. Innocent people paid the price for the negligence and irresponsibility of the authorities.

The government should demonstrate its will to prevent such incidents from recurring by taking the strictest action against those who defy safety norms. The lawbreakers ought to be tried in fast track courts. Moreover, safety audits ought to be carried out by trained fire fighters or police personnel before such events are organized. Permission must only be granted if all safety measures are in place. A Disaster managementteam should be stationed close by during such occasions so that relief can be provided immediately if a mishap were to occur. One hopes that the people affected by this tragedy find the strength to cope with their loss.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

ORDER THOROUGH PROBE INTO PULGAON DEPOT FIRE

DECCAN HERALD, Thur,June,02,2016

Sir, A massive fire that broke out in the wee hours of Tuesday at the ammunition depot in Maharashtras’s Pulgaon that houses the country’s biggest stockpile of weaponry clearly highlights the safety and security shortcoming. This blaze caused massive... Read More

ORDER THOROUGH PROBE INTO PULGAON DEPOT FIRE
DECCAN HERALD, Thur,June,02,2016

Sir, A massive fire that broke out in the wee hours of Tuesday at the ammunition depot in Maharashtras’s Pulgaon that houses the country’s biggest stockpile of weaponry clearly highlights the safety and security shortcoming. This blaze caused massive destruction of human lives and important assets. Pulgaon whch houses the Army’s highly sensitive ammunition and is spread over 7,000 acres, is country’s largest central ammunition depot (CAD) and any fire here is disastrous.

The Pulgon depot is of immense strategic importance, too, as it houses ammunitions received from ordinance factories and is distributed to army units.

Defence Minister Mannohar Parrikar should order a detailed inquiry into this fire and a comprehensive safety audit of all ammunition depots in the country and take corrective measures. Any such mishap during war time will be disastrous for India’s security.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

Fire

With the increasing incidence of fires across the country, the inadequacies in the emergency preparedness gets seriously exposed. Do we need disaster to remind us of basic fire safety measures? These are symptoms of a larger malaise – the careless manner ... Read More

Fire

With the increasing incidence of fires across the country, the inadequacies in the emergency preparedness gets seriously exposed. Do we need disaster to remind us of basic fire safety measures? These are symptoms of a larger malaise – the careless manner in which the government treats fire incidences that result in loss of lives and property. With economic activities across the country only picking up, there is urgent need to make fire safety norms more stringent. A national Fire safety Board needs to be made so as to frame guidelines that should be implemented across the country.

Present laws regarding fire safety are obsolete and fire forces across the country need to use better equipment to meet complex fire hazards. They need to be more empowered to enforce fire security measures and prosecute the violators for major lapses. Also, surprise checks should be made to ensure fire safety norms are stringently adhered to.

Many multi-storeyed buildings have nether been designed according to the national building code nor adequately equipped to cope with major fire disasters. All these buildings need to have functional fire equipment such as extinguishers, sprinklers, sensors, adequate water reserves, trained people and open space for evacuation. Also drills should be conducted at regular intervals to meet eventualities.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

Fire - Tragedy in Bangalore

Khaleej times - 14 November 2012-L.E.

Yesterday’s massive fire at Bommasandra, Bangalore, was doused by the valiant efforts of the firefighters. It took six hours and 26 tenders to douse the fire, which reflects on the poor fire safety standards in our country.After every major fire, we... Read More

Fire - Tragedy in Bangalore
Khaleej times - 14 November 2012-L.E.

Yesterday’s massive fire at Bommasandra, Bangalore, was doused by the valiant efforts of the firefighters. It took six hours and 26 tenders to douse the fire, which reflects on the poor fire safety standards in our country.

After every major fire, we only hear Indian government functionaries announcing the formation of probe committees and some monetary compensation for the affected. But everything is forgotten till another fire tragedy takes place. It seems authorities are pushing safety aspects to the back seat and not giving precedence to public safety.

Although upgrading fire safety equipment and procedures in public buildings may be time consuming and costly, it should be done considering how many lives are lost in fire-related accidents. The best course of action will be to immediately carry out afire safety audit at all large public buildings like IT parks and big shopping malls.

Big factories should immediately ensure that they have installed adequate fire safety equipment in place and whether they are in proper working condition. The government should realize that by just enacting rigid safety laws their responsibility does not cease; it should have a strong supervisory mechanism that ensures these laws are implemented.

Firefighters should visit these public buildings and factories to carry out surprise checks on fire safety mechanism and take stringent action against those who flout these safety procedures.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

Inferno issue revisits

Deccan chronicle-10 Nov 2012-L.E.

The Major fire at Bommasandra should make officials realize how important fire safety measures are in rapidly expanding city like Bangalore.Soon after fire a fire mishap happened,we see official rushing to spot and announcing probe panel compensation for affected.But everything is soon forgotten till another tragedy occurs... Read More

Inferno issue revisits
Deccan chronicle-10 Nov 2012-L.E.

The Major fire at Bommasandra should make officials realize how important fire safety measures are in rapidly expanding city like Bangalore.Soon after fire a fire mishap happened,we see official rushing to spot and announcing probe panel compensation for affected.But everything is soon forgotten till another tragedy occurs.

fire safety in public buildings needs to be accorded top priority even it costs a bomb as negligence may take a heavy toll of life and propertyWe need to conduct a fire safety audit in all public buildings to ensure fire safety equipments are in place and periodic safety drills are conducted at regular intervals.

Fire force personnel should visit these buildings/factories and take stringent action against violations.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

Improve Fire Safety Measures

Sir, Yesterday’s tragic horrific fire accident at ICU of a hospital’s in Bhuwneshwar and at posh residential high rise residential building in Mumbai’s are just a case to point, that there is urgent need to revisits the fire safety measures in place at these .... Read More

Improve Fire Safety Measures

Sir, Yesterday’s tragic horrific fire accident at ICU of a hospital’s in Bhuwneshwar and at posh residential high rise residential building in Mumbai’s are just a case to point, that there is urgent need to revisits the fire safety measures in place at these place, and need to carry out fire safety audit of all such large high buildings, commercial buildings, shopping malls ,IT parks, Public places. With frequent tragic fire incidences , there is a urgent need to have effective fire management system with supportive passive fire protection personnel in buildings 24X7 ,till fire force personnel arrives at fire scene ,with this at least fire can be stopped to spread further, Bangalore city has witnessed some of the worst fire infernos in the past, By ignoring the attention on fire safety measures, we are only paving the way for major disasters which are looming on these establishments which don” have adequate fire system , As part of a larger emergency response mechanism, Cities needs well-equipped, well-trained firebrigades, seeing the worsening traffic situations in our large cities timing is essential in controlling blazes, which is why it is key that there must be an adequate number of fire stations in the city so that fire tenders are able to arrive at the scene within minutes of a blaze being reported, also to face the fires at high rising building, they need fire tenders which can have reach to manage fire at higher floors.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

Fire fighting preparedness-L.E

Vijay times,April 22,2006,L.E

With the increasing number of fire accidents, especially after those at Meerut and Kumbakonam, the inadequacies in fire emergency preparedness have been exposed. Do we need such disasters to remind us to adopt basic fire safety measures? These are symptoms of a .... Read More

Fire fighting preparedness-L.E
Vijay times,April 22,2006,L.E

With the increasing number of fire accidents, especially after those at Meerut and Kumbakonam, the inadequacies in fire emergency preparedness have been exposed. Do we need such disasters to remind us to adopt basic fire safety measures? These are symptoms of a larger malaise and reveal the careless manner in which the nations has treated fire hazards that cause major loss of lives and property every year.

There is urgent need to set up a national fire safety board to prepare a safety manual which should be made mandatory and implemented across the country in all commercial and residential premises. Every time a major fire takes place, nothing is done to prevent its recurrence.

Present laws regarding fire safety are out dated. With multi-dimensional economic progress across the country, there is urgent need to frame more stringent laws. Fire fighting farces across the country should be modernized with beta, training and equipment to meet complex fire hazards.

They should be empowered to enforce fire security measures, deal with violators and prosecute them for major lapses and make surprise checks to ensure that fire safety norms are stringently adhered to. Many skyscrapers and major public buildings have neither been designed as per the national building code nor adequately equipped to cope with: major fire disasters. Fire safety measure should be adopted on top priority.

All buildings should have enough extinguishers, sprinklers, sensor; adequate water reserves, trained people and open spaces as per norms for evacuation. Fire drills should also be conducted regularly.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

Commercial units can’t handle fire tragedies

DNA India 23 September 2011-L.E.

Apropos 'Life is cheap in Bangalore' (September 22, DNA), it congratulations are in order a to DNA for its extensive, in-depth coverage of the tragedy.Wednesday's blaze in a community hall, which engulfed nearby sari dye unit, leading to two deaths; as saddening. It exposes.... Read More

Commercial units can’t handle fire tragedies
DNA India 23 September 2011-L.E.

Apropos 'Life is cheap in Bangalore' (September 22, DNA), it congratulations are in order a to DNA for its extensive, in-depth coverage of the tragedy. Wednesday's blaze in a community hall, which engulfed nearby sari dye unit, leading to two deaths; as saddening. It exposes the systemic apathy and failure to learn from past tragedies. It demonstrates that fire-safety equipment are either ineffective or non-existent. Many commercial establishments are sitting ducks against fire hazards and such horrifying accidents are waiting to happen. It is time to give statutory backing to fire safety norms so that there is no violation.

The government should order a fire safety audit for commercial establishments, especially community halls Hats off to the firemen who carried out the rescue operation despite being grievously injured.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

Inferno issue revisits

Deccan chronicle-10 Nov 2012-L.E.

The Major fire at Bommasandra should make officials realise how important fire safety measures are in rapidly expanding city like Bangalore.Soon after fire a fire mishap happened,we see official rushing to spot and announcing probe panel compensation for .... Read More

Inferno issue revisits
Deccan chronicle-10 Nov 2012-L.E.

The Major fire at Bommasandra should make officials realise how important fire safety measures are in rapidly expanding city like Bangalore. Soon after fire a fire mishap happened,we see official rushing to spot and announcing probe panel compensation for affected.But everything is soon forgotten till another tragedy occurs.

fire safety in public buildings needs to be accorded top priority even it costs a bomb as negligence may take a heavy toll of life and property We need to conduct a fire safety audit in all public buildings to ensure fire safety equipments are in place and periodic safety drills are conducted at regular intervals.

fire force personnel should visit these buildings/factories and take stringent action against violations.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

Fire safety audit must

Deccan chronicle-3rd Feb 2016-LE.

The fire at Bangalore highlights the sad fact that little attention is paid to safety measures,(Fire in Gopalan mall raise questions on safety measures DC feb 2)Such malls are visired by large numbrs of people and as per reports this mall was served notice for violating safety norms.... Read More

Fire safety audit must
Deccan chronicle-3rd Feb 2016-LE.

The fire at Bangalore highlights the sad fact that little attention is paid to safety measures,(Fire in Gopalan mall raise questions on safety measures DC feb 2) Such malls are visired by large numbrs of people and as per reports this mall was served notice for violating safety norms.

The best course of action is to carry out an independent comprehensive safety audit of all commercial buildings in cities.Retired fire force pesonels should be roped in for the purpose.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

Fire safety check mandatory

DNA India 22 November 2011-L.E.

Fire at a community hall in Dalai killed 15 people and injured 40, his happened during the congregation of eunuchs. This should serve as a wake up call to the authorities and they must take necessary steps to ensure fire safety, including providing fully functional... Read More

Fire safety check mandatory
DNA India 22 November 2011-L.E.

Fire at a community hall in Dalai killed 15 people and injured 40, his happened during the congregation of eunuchs. This should serve as a wake up call to the authorities and they must take necessary steps to ensure fire safety, including providing fully functional fire fighting equipment.Authorities must also conduct pectin inspections to ensure fire safety.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

Govt should stop playing with fire

DNA India 23 June 2012-L.E.

The devastating fire accident at Maharashtra Mantralaya exposes the importance—actually, lack of it—that is given to fire safety in our country. We do have a lot of fire-safety rules, what we do not have is the will to implement them. We just assume nothing is going to .... Read More

Govt should stop playing with fire
DNA India 23 June 2012-L.E.

The devastating fire accident at Maharashtra Mantralaya exposes the importance—actually, lack of it—that is given to fire safety in our country. We do have a lot of fire-safety rules, what we do not have is the will to implement them. We just assume nothing is going to happen where we live/work and thus throw precautions out of the window. The results of this taken-for-granted approach are fire accidents, like the one that engulfed the important public building in Maharashtra.

The fire department should conduct safety audits in all high-rise buildings and malls. One cannot afford to b€ casual when it comes to fire safety, as it is a matter of life and death.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

School fire in Jeddah

Arab News–LE-- Mon, Nov 21, 2011-L.E.

My heartfelt condolences to the families of those who lost their lives in the tragic fire in a school inJeddah on Saturday and I pray for the speedy recovery of the injured.The fire which erupted in a girls’ school in which two women lost their lives and 46 students were injured is indeed very tragic and.... Read More

School fire in Jeddah
Arab News–LE-- Mon, Nov 21, 2011-L.E.

My heartfelt condolences to the families of those who lost their lives in the tragic fire in a school inJeddah on Saturday and I pray for the speedy recovery of the injured.

The fire which erupted in a girls’ school in which two women lost their lives and 46 students were injured is indeed very tragic and once again highlights the importance of taking very seriously the issue of fire safety in all educational institutions.

Saudi Arabia has an excellent record in handling accidents. The way emergency evacuation was carried out by air of those who were stranded inside the school is most commendable. Otherwise causality would have been much higher.

This tragedy should prompt schools to implement better fire safety norms. There is also the need to carry out fire audit of all schools in Saudi Arabia to find out lapses and whether they meet internal building code of fire safety hazards. We have to find out whether fire alarms are placed at proper places, fire equipment are working and water tank is full. Is watchman trained to take safety measures still fire brigade arrives? Further, fire prevention and awareness program should be conducted in all schools and fire safety measures taught to children and teachers. Both should know the do’s and don’ts in case of a fire.

There was a devastating fire at a school at Kumbakonam in south India in 2004. The accident claimed the lives of 84 children. All this is a grim reminder of the fact that fire safety is of utmost importance in schools.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.

FIRE SAFETY NORMS ARE NOT BEING FOLLOWED

The pioneer--saturday, 22 october 2016 | Ramesh g jethwani | Bangalore

This refers to the editorial, "Criminal negligence" (October 20). In recent years, we have witnessed some of the worst fire infernos. The recent one is the SUM hospital fire tragedy in Bhubaneswar, which claimed more than 20 lives... Read More

FIRE SAFETY NORMS ARE NOT BEING FOLLOWED
The pioneer--saturday, 22 october 2016 | ramesh g jethwani | bangalore

This refers to the editorial, "Criminal negligence" (October 20). In recent years, we have witnessed some of the worst fire infernos. The recent one is the SUM hospital fire tragedy in Bhubaneswar, which claimed more than 20 lives. By ignoring attention on fire safety measures, we are only paving the way for major disasters which are looming on establishments that don't have adequate fire protection systems.

As part of a larger emergency response mechanism, our cities needs well-equipped, well-trained fire brigades. In view of the worsening traffic conditions in our cities, timing is essential in controlling blazes. This is why it is essential that there must be an adequate number of fire stations so that fire tenders are able to arrive at the scene within minutes of a blaze being reported. Also, to face the fires in high-rising buildings, fire tenders which can have reach to manage fire at higher floors, are needed on call.

- Ramesh G Jethwani Bangalore.
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