Staff Reporter

Mock drill conducted in three industrial units

Mock drill conducted by NDMA

Drill first of its kind in the State

KOCHI: A full-fledged mock drill simulating a chemical disaster in three industrial units in Eloor Udyogamandal was carried out on Tuesday.

Forty-four persons affected by the disaster were “hospitalised,” while another 127 persons were removed to the “relief centre.” Nobody was “seriously injured.”

The mock drill, conducted by the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), was based on an imaginary chemical disaster that occurred in Travancore Cochin Chemicals (TCC), Hindustan Insecticides Limited (HIL) and Fertilizers and Chemical Travancore Limited (FACT) between 11 a.m. and 12.40 p.m.

Reports of “chlorine leakage” at TCC came in first, followed by “thynol chloride leakage” at HIL and finally, “ammonia leakage” from FACT. Following this, District Collector A.P.M. Mohammed Hanish rushed to the scene and a control room was quickly set up under his direct supervision at the FACT training centre.

The “situation” in all the three units could be brought under control within 20 minutes of the occurrence of the “disaster” due to the “timely intervention” of the District Disaster Management Authority.

While it was the 15th such elaborate drill to be held at the national level, it was the first of its kind in the State.

The temporary relief centre was set up on the campus of Eloor Government Lower Primary School. The ESI Hospital at Pathalam, JNM and Lakshmi Hospitals participated in the drill.

District Supply Office ensured the supply of food and water for those “removed” to the relief centre. The mock drill was under the direct supervision of A.K. Khanna, Coordinator of the NDMA; and Rakesh Dubey, Director, Disaster Management Institute.

A.K. Thankappan, Additional District Magistrate, coordinated the operation of the control room, while law and order were under the control of P.M. Varghese, Assistant Commissioner of Police.