KARACHI - Requiring at least 100 fire stations, the mighty Karachi is relying on only three functional fire stations to deal any untoward situation in the fifth largest city of the world, The Nation has learnt.
Twenty-two fire stations exist in the metropolis out of which ten fire stations including Lyari Fire station, Landhi, Baldia, Boltan Market, Cattle Colony, Truck Terminal and some other were nonfunctional due to financial crises since couple of years.
Sources said that fire staffers frequently reached their nonfunctional stations and leave after attendance.
They also informed that though many stations are nonfunctional, the department is still being allocated with funds while concerned high ups were utilising it for personal benefits.
The fire brigade department has 58 vehicles including 3 fire snorkels but at least half of the number vehicles are in no working conditions.
According to the budget document of Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) 2013-14, some Rs120 million was allocate for establishing new fire stations in the city while Rs60 million for the repairing of vehicles and other equipments of fire brigade.
When Director Municipal Services Masood Alam was contacted he confirmed that various fire stations of the city have been nonfunctional due to limited resources.
He said that as per population of the metropolis, fire department have only three percent capability for fire control operation.
The fire brigade facing huge financial crunch, he revealed.
He informed that at least 100 fire stations are required to meet the requirement of the city.
He said that they have purposed the government to establish two new fire stations on immediate basis in Ehsanabad Locality and Steel Town but unfortunately could not be possible due to lack of funds.
Following the issue of released funds which allocate in budget of 2013-14, he said that establishment and construction of new fire stations were responsibilities of planning department. The department is responsible to answer the utilization of the budget of new fire stations, he added.
KMC had contracted with a private company to repair works of fire vehicles but KMC is also defaulter of millions of rupees to the company.