To ensure buildings in the city withstand tremors and are structurally safe, the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) will be training engineers working with various government agencies. After the inspection is complete they will submit their reports recommending necessary action.
Lt-Governor Tejendra Khanna inaugurated the training programme on Tuesday.
“It will provide a platform for citizens to identify whether their buildings are unsafe and structurally weak and if there is need of retrofitting or reconstruction of the building. A new agency should be set up in Delhi to look into these needs as thousands of buildings in Delhi, especially in east Delhi, are unsafe,” said Khanna.
To begin with, 300 engineers form MCD, PWD, DDA, CPWD among other agencies will be trained to assess structural safety of buildings.
“The programme will be on Rapid Visual Screening (RVS), which will enable them to assess how safe any building in the city would be during earthquakes,” said M Shashidhar Reddy, vice-chairman of NDMA.
RVS is a method that can easily identify and rank residential buildings that are potentially weak. The RVS procedure will consider different types of buildings based on the construction material. “The five-day training will be conducted batch-wise, and each batch will have 50 engineers,” added Reddy.
Officials of NDMA, Delhi Disaster Management Authority and MCD met on Monday to chalk out the training schedule and have decided to start the training programme.
“A curriculum has been designed by NDMA with the help of IIT experts,” said Vijay Dev, principal secretary (revenue), Delhi government.
A team of field engineers will be demonstrating non-destructive tests on selected buildings, which are some of the tools that engineers must be familiar with before declaring a building structurally safe or dangerous.
“Delhi is prone to mild tremors. With hundreds of tall buildings and senseless construction, we need to take effective and quick action to minimise damage during an unlikely event,” said an NDMA official.