THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: With barely a month before the monsoon, the State Disaster Management Authority (SDMA) has come out with an upgraded version of the ‘Monsoon Preparedness and Emergency Response Plan’.
The plan streamlines the roles and responsibilities of around 29 departments, Central agencies, district disaster management authorities and the State Emergency Operation Centre (SEOC) during monsoon and mandates the constitution of an Incident Response System (IRS) at the state, district and taluk levels. The plan is applicable for the South-west and North-east monsoons that stretch from June to December.
“The previous plan had some anomalies. The main flaw was related to defining clear-cut roles and responsibilities of various departments. So, the revised version of the plan was chalked out,” said an officer with the SDMA.
“The plan was approved by the SDMA state executive committee on May 6 and was later presented at a meeting held recently to assess the state’s monsoon preparedness. Representatives of 29 state departments and 12 security agencies attended the meet,” the officer said.
‘Not the final plan’
The officer said this was not the final version of the plan. “The SDMA-approved plan has been sent to the departments and agencies concerned and will only be finalised after incorporating their views. The final plan is expected to be released by this month end,” said the officer.
SDMA authorities said the plan’s upgraded version, which was approved by the state executive committee, included monsoon prognosis of multiple agencies, types of warnings from IMD (Indian Meteorological Department) during monsoon, possible disasters in Kerala during monsoon and roles of SEOC, Central agencies, DDMAs and the 29 departments.
Sub-plan of disaster management handbook
It is learnt that the season-specific plan will be considered as a sub-plan of the Handbook on Disaster Management released in 2016 and will be updated every year after receiving the first, long-range monsoon forecast issued by IMD.
In the case of IRS, specific directions will be issued by the Disaster Management Department for constituting the same at the state, district and taluk levels.
The SDMA, while providing necessary training to officers notified under the IRS, will also have to direct the respective DDMAs to notify the IRS at the district and taluk levels.