HCMC's 42,200 mini-apartments for rent harbor fire risks

By Le Tuyet   September 15, 2023 | 05:32 am PT
HCMC's 42,200 mini-apartments for rent harbor fire risks
Le Manh Ha, deputy head of the staff office of HCMC police, speaks at a press meet, September 14, 2023. Photo by HCMC Press Center
HCMC currently has around 42,200 mini-apartments for rent that harbor many risks, HCMC police have said.

Le Manh Ha, deputy head of the staff office of HCMC Police, said at a press meet on Thursday that current regulations did not specify an exact definition for mini-apartments. This model is similar to apartment buildings, with many apartments and paths, as well as public staircases and other infrastructures, he added.

Most of the apartment blocks are equipped with fire alarm systems, but they still harbor risks of explosions and fire due to improper use of electrical equipment.

Each single apartment is not equipped with firefighting systems, or such systems are not regularly evaluated and maintained.

There are often no personnel properly trained in firefighting stationed, and the people who live there are not equipped with firefighting skills, Ha said.

He said the most dangerous locations were high-rise buildings that use basements as parking lots which were not installed with fire alarm systems and other safety measures. If a fire begins at the basement, severe damage will be incurred, he said.

HCMC authorities are performing evaluations on buildings with a large number of rooms for rents across the city per a request from the prime minister. The police will deal with fire safety violations at these facilities, they added.

A fire at a Hanoi apartment block on Tuesday night in Thanh Xuan District killed 56 people and injured dozens of others. The owner of the building has been arrested on fire safety violations.

The block is a 10-story house over nearly 200 square meters that was divided into 45 apartments for rent, each of 20-50 square meters. The owner only gained a permit in 2015 to build a 6-story house.

Hanoi Party chief Dinh Tien Dung on Wednesday also ordered fire safety inspections into all mini apartment buildings across the city.

go to top