Bhubaneswar, March 28 (LocalWire): Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi on Wednesday reviewed the preparedness of various departments against heat-wave at a meeting held at the State Secretariat here.
Secretaries and officers from various government departments were present in the meeting.
Bishnupada Sethi, special relief commissioner, highlighted the impact of heat-wave and said that 18 of 19 hottest years recorded globally have occurred since 2001.
He said that last 5 years have been the hottest 5 years globally (2014-2018).
Climate change is fueling more intense and longer heat waves across every continent and thus could decrease work capacity, he said.
Sethi said that heat waves in Odisha generally occur during summer, from March to June.
Heat wave pattern differs from region to region. Coastal areas experience humid heat and western parts experience dry heat. Relative humidity remains less during summer, since the monsoon onset occurs at the end of May. Heat wave in June is more severe if onset of Monsoon is delayed, he added.
Although Odisha’s 1998 heat death toll was much higher at 2042, casualty reduced substantially in subsequent years after the massive awareness campaign undertaken by Odisha State Disaster Management Authority (OSDMA) as well by the related departments.
However, the state had experienced another massive heat wave in 2005, losing 236 lives due to prolonged summer. In 2018, the toll was limited to 15.
Heat wave has been declared as a state specific disaster from 2015 and an amount of Rs.50,000 is being given as ex-gratia to the family of victim who dies due to sunstroke.
Odisha State Disaster Management Authority (OSDMA) has prepared the Heat Action Plan for the year 2019, in which the department specific roles and responsibilities are highlighted.
The IMD director has said that the heat wave alert/warning messages will be issued through emails to government departments, institutions and the media.
Forecast and warning on heat wave for all districts for 5 days and city forecast for 7 days consisting of maximum & minimum temperatures, sky condition & weather of selected cities of Odisha are being provided by IMD.
Chief secretary reviewed various measures to be taken by different departments to combat the heat wave situation in the state. Specific instruction was given to the Health Department for keeping adequate facility in the hospitals to treat the sunstroke patients.
Generators should be kept ready for uninterrupted operation of air-conditioners/ air-coolers in heat wave ward/ cool rooms in the hospitals.