HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
KATHMANDU: Kathmandu Metropolitan City has received new fire engines, rescue trucks and other equipment for fire fighters.
Ernest Prayer, fire brigade chief at Bozen/Bolzano province, Italy, handed over the fire engines and rescue equipment to Kedar Bahadur Adhikari, executive chief of KMC, at a function in the Capital today.
The Autonomous Province of Bozen/Bolzano provided the assistance to KMC with help from Rotary Club of Kathmandu Mid Town. The city has received a 30-metre long ladder, a large fire engine capable of carrying 2,200 litres of payload, a small fire engine with capacity of 400 litres, a heavy rescue truck, a light rescue truck and a jeep, city officials said. KMC said the small fire engine is capable of negotiating narrow and congested inner roads of the Capital city. Authorities were facing a hard time responding to emergencies during the dry season due to the lack of resources and adequate water supply coupled with traffic congestion.
The fire engines and equipment will be used by Juddha Barun Yantra under the KMC. The rescue truck will be used for search and rescue operations.
KMC informed that the six-seater jeep will be used to send reinforcements to the incident site. With a population of three million, the Kathmandu Valley was in need of more fire engines. Until yesterday, it had six fire engines, of which the fire engine at Lalitpur municipality has been defunct for over a year. On an average, 50,000 people need one fire engine and a dozen firefighters, according to KMC. As the winter sets in, the fire brigade deals with around four incidents of fire every day in the Kathmandu Valley. The first fire engine was brought to Nepal from Great Britain in 1937.