Fire Department Raises Alarm: 148 Hospitals Deemed Unsafe in Nagpur

Ensuring Safety Amidst the Crisis

Nagpur: In a recent development, the fire and emergency services department of Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) has sounded the alarm, declaring a staggering 148 hospitals within the city as unsafe havens. This significant action follows a rigorous inspection conducted by personnel from nine fire stations, who meticulously scrutinized 424 hospitals within the Nagpur city limits to ascertain their compliance with essential firefighting norms.

The Critical Findings

The comprehensive inspection unearthed a troubling reality: a significant portion of these vital healthcare institutions—191 to be precise—lacked the mandatory firefighting equipment, posing an imminent threat to the safety and well-being of patients, staff, and visitors alike. Despite earnest efforts by some property owners to initiate the installation of firefighting apparatus, many fell short in fully addressing the recommendations provided.

In light of these alarming findings, the department invoked the Maharashtra Fire Prevention and Life Safety Measures Act, 2006, to officially declare 148 hospital buildings as unsafe in Nagpur. This crucial step underscores the gravity of the situation and serves as a stern reminder of the paramount importance of adhering to established safety protocols and regulations.

Addressing Immediate Concerns

Speaking on behalf of the department, officiating chief fire officer BP Chandankhede emphasized the urgency of the situation, urging the occupants of these compromised structures to vacate the premises promptly. The severity of the issue is further highlighted by the distribution of unsafe structures across various fire station jurisdictions, with Civil Lines bearing the brunt, accounting for 41 of the identified hazardous hospitals.

A Call for Vigilance and Compliance

Despite Nagpur’s stature as a burgeoning healthcare hub in central India, the persistent inadequacy of fire safety measures in many hospitals remains a glaring concern. Officials caution that these institutions, lacking proper firefighting mechanisms or escape arrangements, pose significant risks, potentially transforming into fatal traps in the event of a fire outbreak.

Navigating Regulatory Lapses

Further exacerbating the situation, the survey uncovered disturbing trends, with approximately 142 hospitals (In Nagpur) operating without sanctioned plans. This revelation suggests a concerning trend of hospitals functioning within residential buildings, devoid of the requisite authorized plans to operate as medical facilities—a situation ripe for potential disaster.

Enforcing Accountability and Remedial Measures

In response to these findings, the department has taken decisive action, dispatching notices to building owners mandating the installation of firefighting equipment. Additionally, directives have been issued to relevant municipal departments and utilities to disconnect water and power supply to 62 identified hazardous hospital buildings, underscoring the seriousness with which these safety lapses are being addressed.

Moreover, the department has not hesitated to escalate matters further, lodging police complaints against 69 owners and occupants of non-compliant hospital buildings. These measures signify a concerted effort to enforce adherence to firefighting norms and ensure the safety and well-being of all stakeholders.

Progress Amidst Challenges

Amidst these challenges, it’s worth noting that out of the 424 hospitals inspected, 263 have obtained the initial fire no-objection certificate, with 109 demonstrating compliance with firefighting norms, subsequently receiving the final fitness certificate from the fire department. While commendable, these figures underscore the ongoing need for vigilance and regulatory compliance in safeguarding public safety.


1. How were the hospitals identified as unsafe?

  • The fire department conducted thorough inspections across 424 hospitals, identifying deficiencies in firefighting equipment and adherence to safety protocols.

2. What legal framework governs the declaration of unsafe hospitals?

  • The Maharashtra Fire Prevention and Life Safety Measures Act, 2006, empowers authorities to declare buildings unsafe if they fail to meet specified safety standards.

3. What actions are being taken to address the safety lapses?

  • Notices have been issued to building owners for the installation of firefighting equipment, while utilities have been instructed to disconnect services to non-compliant buildings. Legal measures are also being pursued against negligent parties.

4. Are there any hospitals compliant with safety regulations?

  • Yes, out of the inspected hospitals, a significant number have obtained the necessary certificates demonstrating compliance with firefighting norms.

5. What steps can hospitals take to ensure compliance with safety standards?

  • Hospital administrations should prioritize the installation of firefighting equipment, conduct regular safety audits, and ensure compliance with regulatory requirements to mitigate fire hazards effectively.

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