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Fire drill conducted, demolition announced by Palace Museum

(People's Daily Online)    13:12, October 11, 2016

The Palace Museum held a fire drill on Oct. 10 for the 91st anniversary of its founding. Lasting for one hour, around 500 people from the Palace Museum and fire control department took part in the drill. The site also announced plans to demolish a collection of temporary steel structures on its grounds.

Shan Jixiang, director of the Palace Museum, explained that historic architecture is almost all made from wood. Fire control is therefore both complicated and essential. Fire drills must be held regularly to ensure a smooth emergency response and guarantee the security of these architectural relics.

Shan went on to say that nearly 100 fire disasters have occurred since 1420, when the Forbidden City was established. Fire control is a top priority in terms of the site's security work, Shan emphasized.

In addition to the large-scale fire drill, the Palace Museum also proposed removing a selection of steel houses and other temporary structures by mid-2017. These temporary structures were built to relieve a housing shortage, but they also present a potential security risk and negatively influence the landscape. The Palace Museum has been working since 2013 to tackle these and other problems.

Shan said that removing the temporary structures will help to recover the original appearance of the ancient architecture, and expand the space available for visitors to tour. Moreover, the demolition will also ensure the protection and ongoing renovation of precious cultural relics.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Zhang Tianrui, Bianji)

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