Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) has put its employees and disaster management teams on alert to tackle any possible fallout of Cyclone Asani.
Sixteen teams, one for each borough of the KMC, have been formed and the members will be armed with machinery to clear branches of fallen trees, senior officials said.
A group of officials will start visiting each borough from Tuesday to check for electrical wires jutting out of lamp posts and feeder boxes.
Following a meeting with senior officials, KMC commissioner Binod Kumar said at least 95 per cent of all pumps should be kept ready at all 76 pumping stations across the city.
“That apart, around 700 portable pumps are being kept ready to drain out water from low-lying areas,” said a senior official.
Officials have been asked to keep diesel generator sets ready at all pumping stations to ensure that supply of water is not hampered because of power cuts. The diesel generators will be ready at the booster pumping stations, too, officials said.
Officials responsible for distribution of drinking water will be present in the pumping stations for the next two days.
Tallah water tank
Only about 80 per cent of the water tank in Tallah — located around 110 feet above the ground — will be filled. A fuller and heavier tank could suffer more damage from a storm, said an engineer. The total capacity of the tank is close to 90 lakh gallons.
Two teams from the National Disaster Response Force are being kept ready.
A 13-member team of mayoral council members from the KMC will be coordinating with different agencies, including police and the PWD, over the next two days in all 16 boroughs.
The mayoral council members will be spending their nights at the borough offices assigned to them if the situation turns grave and coordinate with the control room at the KMC’s headquarters on SN Banerjee Road in central Kolkata.
“We are more concerned with the rain than the storm. All pumping stations have been asked to be fully prepared and separate teams have been readied in each borough,” mayor Firhad Hakim said on Monday.
“One of the challenges of keeping gully pits clean is plastic waste. We will soon start a drive to spread awareness among the people that indiscriminate use of plastic will result in water draining out slowly.”
The leave of employees in several departments, including drainage, light, solid waste management, parks and disaster management have been cancelled till May 12, sources said.