Construction expert Ramil Osmanli notes that frequently the fires are caused by construction mistakes and are preventable. The rash of fires at Baku residential buildings were "directly related to breaches in safety regulations by construction companies," he says.
“It is possible to prevent these events, but relevant executive authorities don’t interfere on time.” Osmanli said.
He notes that the government is starting to hold companies responsible. For instance, new sanctions and penalties are being imposed on construction companies. While they are still not fully complying with safety regulations, construction companies are doing a better job than in the past, Osmanli says.
“As a result of several actions that were taken, especially in multi-apartment buildings, the quality problems are no longer an issue, even though there have been some violations of the buildings standards," he notes.
The head of the two companies that produced the polyurethane façade and installed it on the Binagadi apartment where Sevinj Fadai lived in 2015 was arrested after the fire. Out of the eight people charged over the fire, three were released long before they had served their sentence.
Despite the arrests and jail sentences, Fadai still doesn't know exactly what caused the fire that put her and her baby in danger. The former residents have been told the fire started from the trash and then spread to the building.
But Fadai argues the trash cans were in the courtyard, nowhere near the facades. "We could not have known that our building was not safe or that there was some sort of danger," she says.
"Their claims are baseless. Of course they knew about the danger beforehand but they did nothing to prevent it."