20th January 2018


India, due to its, physiographic and climatic conditions is one of the most disaster prone areas of the world. Many of our International Points of entry (Airports, Ports and Land Ports) are located in zones that are vulnerable to natural and man- made hazards. Hazard is defined as any dangerous phenomenon, substance, human activity, or condition that may cause loss of life, injury or other health impacts, property damage, loss of livelihoods and services, social and economic disruption, or environmental damage. The exposure to hazards, the conditions of vulnerability that are present and insufficient capacity or measures to reduce or cope with the potential negative consequences calls upon proactive, all hazards approach, especially, at International Points of entry. The response activities should be applicable to all types of hazards; major themes of response being, Early warning systems, evacuation of people and animals, search and rescue, medical care, drinking water supply, sanitation, food supply, communication, etc. This response requires intersectoral coordination and collaboration

The earthquake which hit Andaman Sea in 2004, led to large tsunami waves which affected the East Coast of India. Ports of Chennai, Vizag and Andaman and Nicobar were worst affected. Many ships were damaged and got embedded in the sand. In Andaman the entire naval airport was swept away. India had cyclones; Hud Hud, Helen, Phailin which affected the Easter Ports. Airports and seaports in the area were visibly damaged but the impact on the population was limited due to early prediction of cyclones and rescue to safe areas. Flash flooding of Ports and Airports are rare events but the sudden Flash Flood which affected Chennai affected the lives of people of Chennai. Many of the houses, persons were swept away by the flood. Chennai Airport was flooded and flights were either diverted or took off from Airforce Port in Avadi.

Some of the public health emergencies of international concern (PHEIC) which haven't hit India (like Yellow fever, Ebola, MERS CoV and more recently Zika virus) but at the same time they have the potential to cause unprecedented damage.

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