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Mini fire stations to mushroom in downtown Shanghai

SHANGHAI is planning to build small-sized fire stations in downtown areas to address the shortage of firefighting facilities, local officials said today.

Since land is scarce in downtown Shanghai, only mini fire stations can be built in narrow lanes and between high-rises.

Zhao Zixin, director of the Shanghai Fire Control Bureau, said the existing fire stations in downtown districts are not enough to safeguard the dense population, and it is almost impossible to build fire stations as large as those in suburban areas due to limited land resources.

He said there are only two fire stations in Jing'an District. That explains why it took some long for reinforcements to join local firefighters to put out the high-rise inferno that killed 58 people on November 15.

In the former Luwan District which was merged with Huangpu District last month, there was only one fire station to cover the whole district.

Zhao said the city government allocated 487 million yuan (US$75.3 million) more money this year to purchase firefighting equipment, especially those that can deal with fires in high-rises, subways and tunnels.


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