By Ann Maxon, Teipai Times:
The National Association for Firefighters’ Rights yesterday called for legislation requiring the government to investigate line-of-duty deaths.
The association staged a 24-hour sit-in outside the Legislative Yuan in Taipei, which drew more than a dozen firefighters and labor rights advocates.
A total of 127 firefighters have died in the line of duty since the beginning of Taiwan’s firefighting service in 1952, but none of the deaths have been properly investigated, association secretary-general Chu Chih-yu (朱智宇) said.
“Were they killed by a faulty firefighting system, by poor equipment and unsafe strategies or the mismanagement of buildings and chemicals? What we would like is a chance to review the firefighting system,” he said.
While prosecutors are required to investigate fires, they are only responsible for determining the cause, and whether property owners or fire commanders should be held criminally liable for any casualties, association president Yang Shih-wei (楊適瑋) said.
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