HYDERABAD : The Army has carried out rescue operations at many places in the cyclone devastated Visakhapatnam district and rescued 80 persons who were stranded at Pundimakada, including women, children and elders.
On request from Andhra Pradesh government, the Army has mobilised eight teams, each comprising 40 personnel and equipped with boats and rescue material. The teams moved from Secunderabad on October 10 and reached Vishakhapatnam on Saturday.
The Army is keeping track of the situation and ordered another eight teams to go to Visakhapatnam. Eight more teams, along with two field hospitals with operation theatre on wheels and surgical facilities, are kept on standby at Secunderabad to move at a short notice.
The Andhra sub-area of the Army has deployed four teams of its personnel at Vishakhapatnam and four teams at Srikakulam. As many as 300 life jackets and other equipment were provided to them.
The Army has also established a disaster management cell at the Air Defence College, Gopalpur in Odisha. Six teams and 10 sub-teams have been deployed for road opening and rescue and relief operations at Gopalpur.
The Army has also kept 25 rescue teams and two Engineer Task Forces on standby at Ranchi, Allahabad and Secunderabad. Indian Navy has also positioned its assets and personnel at locations in Odisha and Andhra Pradesh, including Chilka and Vishakhapatnam, for relief and rescue operation. It has kept 30 diving teams with Gemini craft and associated equipment, 20 rescue teams, four ships with medical stores, six helicopters, two fixed wing aircraft and two medical teams ready at Vishakhapatnam. Indian Air Force has already geared itself up to undertake relief, rescue and rehabilitation operations as and when required.
The IAF has kept one IL-76, one C-17 and five AN-32 aircraft ready at Chandigarh, Delhi, Jorhat and Agra.
It has kept standby three Chetak helicopters at Hakimpet, one Medium Light Helicopter (Mi-8) at Yelahanka and 10 Medium Light Helicopters (Mi-17) at Nagpur, Hyderabad, Kalaikunda, Suratgarh, Bagdogra and Barrackpore.
Indian Coast Guard has also deployed 17 ships, two Air Cushion Vessels (ACVs) and 13 aircraft in eastern and northeastern regions to augment rescue and relief operations. Out of them, six ships and five aircraft have been stationed at Chennai, three ships at Kakinada, three at Vishakhapatnam, four ships at Paradip, one ship, two ACVs and four aircraft at Haldia and four aircraft at Kolkata.
Three rescue teams of the Indian Coast Guard have also been kept on standby at Visakhapatanam, Kakinada and Gopalpur in Odisha for deployment in case of need.