State ready with action plan to brave cyclone - The New Indian Express

State ready with action plan to brave cyclone

Published: 25th May 2013 10:36 AM

Last Updated: 25th May 2013 10:36 AM

With cyclones damaging large-scale property in coastal districts of the State every alternative year, the State Government has started the exercise to assess the preparedness of different agencies, including the district administration, to tackle such situations in the coming days. The post-monsoon period between October and December is more prone to cyclones in the State.

The preparedness was reviewed by Chief Secretary Bijay Kumar Patnaik at a high level meeting at the secretariat on Friday.

Official sources said Rs 600 crore is available under the State Disaster Response Fund. All the departments have been asked to submit their disaster management plan on the basis of which the State Disaster Management Plan will be developed.

The effectiveness of the cyclone warning system and its present status, functioning of alternative communication system during the disaster, restoration of power and telecommunication system, readiness of Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF), availability of emergency equipment, deployment of boats, readiness of rescue and emergency operation systems were discussed at the meeting.

Official sources said the state emergency centre, AIR, Doordarshan and Meteorological department will be connected with hotlines to disseminate any information on cyclone.

Meanwhile, the Odisha State Disaster Management Authority (OSDMA) has started operational inventory of all equipment as per the direction of the Chief Secretary. Patnaik had also asked CESU and BSNL to adopt latest technology for quick erection of electric poles and telephone towers, even if temporarily, for resumption of power supply and telecommunication within least possible time. Official sources said the BSNL will erect another 1,000 towers covering the coastal, hilly and forest areas. A doppler radar station will be set up in the first phase at Paradip followed by other stations at Balasore, Gopalpur and Sambalpur.

The police department has been asked to keep its network and warning system in readiness for use during natural calamity. It has also been decided that the VHF sets owned by OSDMA will be handed over to police for their up-keep, regular use and maintenance. Police have been authorised to make necessary arrangements for maintenance of the sets with fund support from OSDMA.

It has also been decided that the Fire Service department will be strengthened with manpower and equipment support. The OSDMA will provide around 1,000 VHF sets to fire vehicles which will be maintained by the department from their own fund.

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