The Indian Coast Guard (ICG) has deployed multiple teams on land and at sea to conduct search and rescueand-relief operations during and in the aftermath of super cyclone ‘Amphan’, which is likely to hit the coast of Odisha and West Bengal on Wednesday. The preparation to tackle ‘Amphan’ was on since last week. Speaking to The Daily Guardian, ICG spokesperson DIG Vijay Kumar said, “Indian Coast Guard had initiated pre-emptive action from the time IMD issued warning for the development of low pressure in South-East Bay of Bengal.
We issued warning to local administration and fisheries so that fishermen are not be allowed to proceed to sea. ICG has been issuing warnings as well as escorting fishermen at sea to return to nearest harbour. This methodology had ensured that there was no loss of life at sea during the passage of cyclones in year 2019. The pre-emptive actions initiated by the ICG had ensured that there was no loss of lives during the passage of cyclones in the year 2019.
ICG, true to its motto ‘Vyam Rakshamah’ — meaning ‘We Protect’ — has saved more than 400 lives at sea, 4,500 lives as part of assistance rendered to civil authorities in the year 2019 alone. We are working tirelessly to replicate the same during the passage of this severe cyclone too.”
In addition to many ships at sea, the ICG has deployed six ships and two Dornier aircraft since 16 May on the eastern seaboard to issue warnings in local vernacular languages to the fishermen and mariners at sea of the impending adverse weather condition due to the passage of Amphan and requesting them to return to nearest ports for safety. The ICG has so far escorted more than 300 fishing boats operating at sea to nearest ports and no merchant vessel being allowed at port anchorages along the path of the cyclone.
The ICG issued advisories to the local administration, fisheries and fishermen association about the formation of the low pressure and to advise the fishermen not to venture out to sea till the passage of the cyclone. In addition, ports were requested to shift the vessels at anchorage to safer locations well before the arrival of the cyclone.
In order to ensure no life and property is lost at sea, the Indian Coast Guard has been deploying its assets to issue warnings to the fishermen to return to nearest harbour. Further, Navtex warnings and International Safety Net (ISN) have been activated six hourly to request the merchant vessels transiting the area to advise the fishermen to return to harbour.
ON STANDBY: 20 Disaster Relief Teams (DRTs) with inflatable boats, Life buoys and lifejackets have been kept standby by the ICG all along the East coast for undertaking disaster response operations. Medical teams & ambulances have also been kept standby for mobilisation. Five ICG ships and aircraft have been kept standby at Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu for Search and rescue operation post passage of the cyclone ‘Amphan’.