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January 17, 2020

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Campaign to clear fire rescue passages

The government has launched a campaign to clear fire rescue passages in residential complexes in the city, Li Weimin, head of the Shanghai General Fire and Rescue Squad, said yesterday.

The campaign involves persuading residents not to park along major passages in complexes so as to make way for efficient fire rescue, and also the implementation of a decision to use car-moving devices when cars get in the way of fire engines, Li said.

Awareness of the blocking of the so-called “life passages” has been heightened around the country after a case in Chongqing in which a man declined to move his car for fire engines.

In a discussion on public safety issues attended by Li and government colleagues, deputies to the Shanghai People’s Congress shared their views and suggestions.

Yu Yue, a deputy and vice director of the Yueyang Subdistrict in Songjiang District, said older residential complexes are a cause of concern due to lack of parking space.

“Compulsory marking of fire safety passages on the ground could be a good solution, as demonstrated by previous trials, because indeed many residents have no idea where to park cars even though they’re aware of the importance of keeping such passages clear,” she said.

Li Feikang, a deputy from Huangpu District, said the lack of parking spaces in old residential complexes in downtown was a tenacious problem which calls for more vigorous solutions.

“Underground garages should be built wherever possible, and some smaller streets should introduce more parking slots for nearby residents,” he said.

There were 3,961 fire cases in Shanghai last year which resulted in 44 deaths and 41 injuries and direct economic losses of 160 million yuan (US$23 million), fire authorities said.

Last year, fire equipment was upgraded in 100 older residential complexes, and new e-bike charging facilities built in 983 residential complexes, according to Huang Yongping, director of the city’s housing and urban-rural development commission.


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