With the civic chief pronouncing the inevitability of flooding in the city during monsoon, the onus seems to have been shifted to the disaster management cell of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC).
Stating that the civic body has pulled its socks for the monsoon, joint municipal commissioner, disaster management cell, SS Shinde, said: “To keep running 24x7 is the nature of the city. We will ensure this pace is not affected. Our staff will work to deal with flooding.”
Officials from the disaster management cell said that calls received by citizens on water-logging would be given utmost priority. “Once a call comes on our helpline, 108, about water logging, we immediately contact the control room of the concerned local ward office. Their staff is alerted and required action is taken,” said a civic official.
The emergency control at the head office is staffed with 36 personnel working 24x7 on three shifts. A senior official who is the shift in-charge takes a final decision in times of disaster.
Apart from the ward level staff, the BMC has six regional command centres from the Mumbai Fire Brigade and five naval command stations around the city to carry out disaster relief activities.
Modernisation of the disaster management cell of the civic body was undertaken in 2006. Even if the regular communication system in the control room collapses, alternative equipment of wireless and ham radios have been put in place.
“Though we are well-equipped as of now, a more robust communication network would only result in better coordination with the local ward offices,” said the official.