Rules set for dump yard

ENTRY RESTRICTED: A dumper at the Bhuasuni land fill site in Bhubaneswar. Picture by Ashwinee Pati

Bhubaneswar: The Odisha State Pollution Control Board has directed the civic body to implement a set of measures to protect the existing dumping site from possible disasters, mainly the fire related incidents.

The board devised the measures following back to back fires at Bhuasuni in February that not only triggered fears of a major disaster in nearby localities, but also increased pollution levels in the city.

The Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation will take steps to stop unauthorised entry to landfill sites in order to reduce the possibility of causing deliberate fire. "We penalised the civic body for the fires, but they claimed that it was caused by local residents," said a board official.

He, however, maintained that even if the local residents were behind the fire, it was the civic body's duty to stop them from entering the site. "They have been asked to barricade the site properly and make security arrangements to prevent unauthorised entry," said the official.

The board has also directed the civic body to only use soil cover to douse flames instead of using fire tenders. Sources said the water that fire tenders, used to douse flames, could get mixed with waste, got out of the landfill site and increased pollution.

"We have received the pollution control board direction and started implementing it. The last fire was caused by external elements, and we took adequate measures to stop its recurrence. We are going to be specific this time," said a civic official.

Apart from curbing fire related incidents, the board has suggested other measures for the yard's maintenance. It has directed the civic body to divide the yard into four parts and use only one part for land filling while the other parts would be used in later stages.

"We have decided to raise the height of the boundary wall to stop unauthorised entry. We also plan to construct a security room at the site with full-time security guards to ensure round-the-clock safety," said mayor Ananta Narayan Jena.

Sources said the board's suggestions would also be applicable for other urban local bodies.

"We have intimated all municipal bodies in the state after taking lessons from Bhuasuni," said another official of the board.


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