New Delhi: The Delhi Fire Service (DFS) on Diwali responded to over 300 calls, including fires at garbage dumps due to bursting crackers and a blaze at a central Delhi market shop, officials said on Monday.
According to the fire department, 245 fire-related calls were received by its control room till midnight on Sunday and 96 more calls till 10 am on Monday.
"We received 245 fire-related calls till midnight on Diwali and most of the calls were related to blaze in open areas," Chief Fire Officer Atul Garg said, adding that the DFS received 271 calls last year.
As compared to previous years, there has been a decline in cases of fire triggered by burning or firecrackers, the officials said, adding they cannot provide the exact break-up of fire incidents caused due to crackers immediately as it needs to be analysed.
However, the use of firecrackers in Delhi on Diwali has come down over the years over concerns about pollution and due to restrictions imposed on their sale and usage.
Yet, there were violations and people in several parts of the national capital like Jangpura, Lajpat Nagar, RK Puram, Malviya Nagar, Burari, Ashram burst firecrackers until at least midnight, two hours after the 10 PM deadline.
The only major fire incident reported this Diwali was that at a shop in Sadar Bazar market. "The fire broke out in a shop that was housed on the fourth and fifth floors of the building and contained packaging materials and plastic toys, which were gutted in the blaze," the fire official said.
The call about the blaze in the shop was received at 3 pm, after which 12 fire tenders were rushed and the blaze was brought under control by 4.25 pm, he said. A fire also broke out at a sanitary shop in northeast Delhi's Jagatpuri area, the official said.
The call about the fire was received at 2.51 pm after which six fire tenders were pressed into service. The fire was brought under control within an hour. There was no significant decline in the number of calls related to fire-incidents.
No injury or casualty was reported in any of the incident reported on the occasion of Diwali, the officials said. Out of the total calls, even though no major fire incident was reported in Delhi. But fire incidents were reported at dumping grounds and houses due to domestic items, those related to electric wires and transformers.
Garbage dumps at some areas also caught fire due to bursting of crackers, they said. Maximum calls were received from west, east, north, and southern parts of Delhi, the official said. According to the fire department, it received 271 fire-related calls on Diwali last year despite a ban on sale of fire crackers.
Like last year, there was no significant decline in number of calls related to fire-incidents, despite a ban on sale of illegal fire crackers and time restrictions on bursting of green firecrackers, which was allowed only between 8-10 pm.
The DFS had not only deployed 2,000 officers across the city to tackle emergencies on Diwali, but had also stationed 25 officials to man its control room to deal with any fire-related calls. Besides the 61 permanent fire stations in the Delhi, the department had also set up temporary stations at different locations across the city.