KARACHI: Employees of the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation fire brigade department have been given fire risk allowance.

A spokesman for the municipal administration said on Sunday that the employees and officers of the fire brigade department expressed gratitude to Mayor Wasim Akhtar for giving them fire risk allowance even amid shortage of funds.

They said that this act was commendable and their financial issues would be resolved now.

The mayor asked the fire brigade employees and officers to keep performing their duty with courage as their profession could not afford any lethargy. “It is our priority to resolve issues of the fire brigade,” he added.

The mayor added that the federal government was providing the KMC 50 fire engines which would further improve the performance of the department as they would be equipped with modern technology. “The fire engines are equipped with all necessary latest technology,” he added.

Mr Akhtar said that fire stations were also being upgraded and the amount had already been allocated for this purpose in the budget for 2020-21. “Karachiites express confidence in fire brigade and it must match the people’s confidence,” said the mayor.

He also expressed concerns over surge in high-rise buildings in the city and said that Sindh Building Control Authority should follow rules and regulations while giving no-objection certificate for multi-storey buildings. “The fire brigade has capability to extinguish fire up to 8th floor,” he added.

The mayor asked the people to be more careful in this season as fire incidents got increased in summer. “The people should adopt precautionary measures during rains and keep themselves away from electric poles and other electric installations,” he added.

The mayor said that the KMC issued fire risk allowance despite the fact that it was facing financial crisis as the firefighters saved lives of others by keeping their own lives in danger.

He directed that fire stations and engines should be kept on stand-by and employees’ presence was ensured around-the-clock to cope with any untoward situation.

Thanking the mayor for issuing fire risk allowance, the employees and officers assured him that they would continue serving the people by utilising their all resources.

Published in Dawn, July 13th, 2020