Cyclone Yaas: Odisha issues SOPs for urban areas as precautionary measure

Bhubaneswar: With the likely formation of a cyclonic storm over Bay of Bengal on May 24 and possible movement of the system towards Odisha coast, the Housing & Urban Development Department today issued Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for all Urban Local Bodies (ULBs).

Administrative officials of the ULBs have been directed by the department to carry out the SOPs as a part of precautionary measure ahead of the cyclone.

Here are the SOPs:

* Review and finalize alternative shelters, associated officers to ensure timely evacuation and provision for adequate food stuff such as dry chhatua, biscuits, alternate power supply and drinking water.

* Special care for old, infirm, physically and mentally challenged, pregnant and lactating mothers, children and infants. First aid box with essential medicines shall be kept in readiness.

* Arrangements for sanitations and hand hygiene must be put in place. Additional sanitation workers may be engaged for two days for keeping the toilets clean. Materials required for sanitation-phenyl, soap etc. may be kept.

* Lady home guards/security personnel may be deployed in the shelters to take care of women, children, LGBT and other vulnerables. Local volunteers, WSHG members must be identified, briefed and deployed in all the shelters.

* Arrangement for cooking of food stuff, disposable plates, glasses etc. must be planned.

* This being COVID time, COVID protocols and COVID appropriate behaviours must be practised during IEC, evacuation, shelters and post cyclone returns.

* All vulnerable households must be identified and motivated for evacuation to safe shelters.

* All Aska lights, DG sets and other shelter level equipment be inventoried and kept ready for use.

* Control rooms are to be set up(24×7) in all ULBs to manage the water supply situation round the clock and specific WhatsApp groups be created for effective management. Roster arrangement for the control room be made accordingly.

* Pre-positioning of machinery and equipment such as tree cutters along with skilled staff may be made in the likely cyclone affected ULBS.

* Removal of blockages & desilting of major drains should be undertaken for free flow of flood water. Removal of solid waste & sediments from nullahs/drains be made properly. Debris and desludged materials may be cleared immediately without piling it up on the road. High capacity diesel pump sets may be kept in state of readiness for draining out water from low lying areas.

* Uninterrupted water supply may be ensured in the concerned ULBs. More no. of water tankers are to be pre-positioned under the disposal of ULBs in case of power failure at pumping stations. Similarly, adequate no. of DG sets be made available to face any unwarranted situation.

* Power generator sets may be kept ready for street lighting and water supply (in accordance with PHEO) during power failure.

* Sufficient stock of disinfectants (for sanitation of street/ drain water resources), diesel for DG sets and official vehicles may be kept ready.

* Adequate amount of food stuff, drinking water and cattle feeds may be stored in all the identified cyclone/flood shelters. All storage reservoirs are to be kept full by continuous pumping operation to ensure availability of adequate stock in 24 hours immediately after the cyclone.

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