The condition of the Fire Department of Uttarakhand remains the same even today. The department is facing acute shortage of staff and vehicles. The situation is such that a large number of posts from fireman to senior officers in the fire department are also lying vacant while the fire season is going on in the state. Incidents of arson increase in the state during the summer season, but the fire department neither has enough personnel nor vehicles to deal with it. There is a shortage of about 50 percent employees.
Five posts of Chief Fire Officer are vacant while 29 posts of Fire Station Officer are vacant. Apart from this, recruitment has not been done for 26 posts of Fire Station Officer II. 15 posts of Leading Fireman are vacant while there is no recruitment on 455 posts of Fireman. Along with this, 533 posts of office staff are vacant. Not only this, the fire department is also struggling with lack of resources. Hometender 28 and water tank 70 are available, but 45 vehicles are more than 15 years old.
Also there are 22 Portable Pump Caring Vehicles but these too have completed a period of 15 years. There are 98 vehicles of fire tankers with foam and water.
Employees driving risking their lives
According to the rules of the central government, vehicles that have completed 15 years of age cannot run on the roads, but due to the shortage of vehicles in the department, firemen are running these vehicles risking their lives. Deputy Director Fire Sandeep Rana said that action is going on regarding the direct recruitment of 445 fire men, we have only 50 percent work force.