'Blast in AC compressor may have led to Mumbai high-rise fire'
The fire started, following an explosion in the compressor of an AC on the 14th floor of the 21-storey residential building in Chandivali, soon spread to the upper floors due to the presence of combustible materials like furniture and foam in flats, a fire brigade official said.
On May 10, after four firemen, including the city's Chief Fire Officer Sunil Nesarikar died while dousing a devastating blaze in a building in Kalbadevi. "The fire may have been caused due to a blast in the compressor of an AC. But further investigation is underway and the real cause will be known only when we get all the reports," said Chief Fire Officer Prabhat Rahangdale.
The fire broke out at 'Lake Home' building in the upscale suburb at 5.30pm. The fire department deployed 15 vehicles and ambulances to douse the inferno and rescue residents. "The flames spread quickly to the 15th floor due to wooden furniture and foam used in homes. Inferior quality stuff act like highly combustible materials. Strong winds only ended up fanning the fire," Rahangdale said.
He added steps like ensuring that building ducts are sealed on each floor and fire sprinklers properly installed can go a long way in preventing such tragedies and loss of lives. "One of the main reasons of carbon monoxide harming residents on upper floors of a high-rise is ducts. They need to be sealed on each floor so that concentrated air cannot go up. Rahangdale said it becomes difficult for <g data-gr-id="27">fire-fighters</g> to reach up to floors above 42 metres and thus fire sprinklers are essential to prevent <g data-gr-id="28">blaze</g> from spreading.