Friday, May 26, 2006

BCC geared up to tackle rain fury

BCC geared up to tackle rain fury
The Bangalore City Corporation has drawn up a 12-point contingency programme to tackle the problems rains could cause
The Times of India

Bangalore is not new for deluge during rains. In the last couple of years, the city has been witness to flooding and extensive damages to life and property. This time around the Bangalore City Corporation (BCC) seems to be prepared to limit the rain fury in the city.

Speaking about the plans that the authority is working on, BCC Engineer-in-Chief Rame Gowda said, "we have drawn up a 12 point contingency programme to tackle the rain-related problems. We are working in a systematic way to counter the rains this time and we are happy to say work related to the programme is being carried out briskly. We are meeting the deadlines. In Bangalore, the main cause for water logging is the functional failure of storm water drains (SWD). Over the years, these SWD have become incapacitated. Rapid urbanisation, encroachment to SWDs, damages in the drain walls and blockages in the drains are the main causes for overflowing of storm water leading to floods and we are addressing these issues through this contingency this programme".

The 12-point contingency programmes chalked out by the BCC are:

Rain pattern
The BCC has zeroed in on the months - May, July, August, September and October as heavy rainfall periods and the tendency of rains in Bangalore is that 85 percent rains occur between 4 pm and 4 am. In the last four years the city has received highest rainfalls in these months. In these months the authority plans to give highest priority to handle rain-related problems and as a result, no BCC staff will be given leave. In case of emergency only the BCC Commissioner has the authority to sanction leave.

Control room operation
Till recently, the BCC had stationed four Prahari teams, one in the head office and three in east, west and south zone offices. Now, four more Prahari teams have been added to step up relief operation. These Prahari teams work round the clock to attend to all the emergencies in the city due to rains such as evacuating people stuck in flooding area, clearing roads from fallen trees, clearing SWD etc.

Low-lying areas
All the low-lying areas in the city account for 150 pockets. The BCC is identifying the causes of flooding in these areas and has suggested measures that could be taken to remedy the problems in the short run. These action plans are underway and the authority is confident of completing the work by June 15. The BCC has circled out Ejipura in Koramangala Valley, Shankarappa Garden in Vrishabavathi Valley, and some areas around Ulsoor Lake as flood-prone areas. Says Rame Gowda, "usually, floods in Bangalore don't last for more than two hours. If the situation goes out of control we will evacuate the residents from that area".

Silt and tractors
Around 135 tractors are working round the clock to clear drains of debris and silt along 635 kms of tertiary drains. The work, which started on March 6, is expected to get over by May 31.

Road/drains damage
Damages to roads and drains during heavy rains in the past is being addressed by the BCC. The authority is spending Rs 45 crores to attend to these works. In addition to Prahari teams, the BCC will deploy squads. Each squad has 30 trained men on the job with an excavator, motors to pump out the water, and all other necessary equipment. In addition to the squads there are about 100 people who will be pressed into service during rains.

The BCC has identified informers in all the areas across the city. These informers/volunteers are either from NGOs or citizens. They will assess the situation and there upon inform the authorities concerned for specific action to be taken.
Engineers in the respective wards are being given orders to inspect the areas coming under their jurisdiction during rains and look out for potential problems and address them immediately. They will carry out inspections even after the rains to take stock of the situation.

It has been noticed in the past that water logging occurs near ROBs/RUBs. To remove the water, BCC gangmen are being deputed near the all the ROBs/RUBs in the city.

The BCC is in the process of collection of sand bags. These sand bags will be used during floods to stop water or to even raise the height of retaining walls of SWDs.

Task force
The BCC has formed a task force comprising senior officials, DCs and engineers. The task force will over look all the works related to rains in the city. They will meet regularly to hold discussion on the issues, address them and monitor the works.

Tree squad
A tree squad under the BCC DCF is carrying out a survey in the city on the weak-rooted trees. An operation to chop potentially dangerous trees is already underway. It may be recalled here during last rains, many vehicles were damaged because of tree falling and was fatal in two cases. The BCC will complete the work of removing these trees by June.

Potential hazards

Watch out for potholes, open ditches, and electric accidents. If you are on the road and water logging is up to your knee, it is difficult to wade through your way as you cannot make out where the road ends or starts. So always stick to the middle of the road and never get to the extreme left of the road because there may be SWD flowing at the road level. If you are in an area where branches and trees have been uprooted, there are chances of power lines getting snapped and lying on the road. The Bescom usually cuts off power supply during heavy rains in such areas but in any case watch out for live wires around you when you are on the move.

You can call them…
The BCC can be contacted round the clock. If you have an emergency such as fallen trees, water flooding, or any problems associated with the rains, you can approach a BCC special team called Prahari, which will address your problem immediately.

The team can be contacted round the clock on:
South zone: 2566365, 2566362 West zone: 2361704, 2341692 East zone: 2582247 Control room: 22100031-35, 2221188, 22123535


At Friday, May 26, 2006 at 9:07:00 PM GMT+5:30, Anonymous Anonymous said...

BJP told us that pro-rich policies will eventually trickle down to the down-trodden. People like this Basavaraj were working hard to plug such trickling down of the rich man's money. They made the municipal corporation ban the collection of parking fees saying it was being collected "illegally". They shouted down anyone who wanted to regulate the parking scene. There is a $6 toll to enter Manhattan and parking can leave you poorer by another $30. All this money in the capital of capitalism goes to public services. Please post the city BJP's contact details.


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