Disaster management agency readies people for any crisis

The Delhi Disaster Management Authority, south district will perform mock drills in six government schools, malls, slums, unauthorised colonies and hospitals to prepare Delhiites in case of disaster.

DDMA officials say Delhi schools and hospitals are most vulnerable to disasters such as fire, earthquake and fatal accidents as both places house majority of Delhi residents in the day.

DDMA is currently working on a four-month long project where they will train citizens and perform mock drills in different institutions across Delhi. The inspection officers have recently visited hotels such as Sheraton, Qutub, Hilton and Crowne Plaza to check the disaster management procedure they follow. The authority has also decided to organise awareness programmes in six schools such as NSKU in Begumpur, Government Girls Higher Secondary School in Ambedkar Nagar and  K G Sarvodaya Bal Vidyalaya in the next two months.

They aim to spread awareness about rescue operations and adequate measures which can help avoid man-made disasters.

“Our main aim is to simulate Delhi societies and provide them with alternatives in case facilities are not immediately available. We have to empower people so that they can protect themselves,” said Pravesh Ranjan Jha, sub-divisional magistrate, DDMA (south). He added that critical analysis of buildings is another area they have started exploring to ensure that the builders are given fair warning about evident drawbacks.

The authority has also started identifying shelters across south. “We are also training civil defence officers. They approach communities in south district and brief them about stocking food and provide basic tips to prevent fire, where to take shelter in case of a massive earthquakes and so on,” added Pravesh.

The disaster helpline number for Delhi is 1077. There is an emergency operation centre in south district as well, with trained civil defence officers working round the clock. They can be contacted at 011-29533222.

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