India

Chennai rains: How control rooms deal with rain complaints and allay public fear

The telephones in the control room of the Greater Chennai Corporation have been ringing continuously since Saturday evening, November 6. Forty-five people – volunteers and company managers – handled these calls. Since the flood on November 6, the three integrated call centers have received more than 16,000 calls to date. “Most of the calls are about flooding. We roughly categorize these calls into six categories: water flooding, energy, health, falling trees, etc. must be taken, ” said MS Prashant, Deputy Commissioner (Works), Chennai Corporation.

However, many of these calls may not be from people in need of urgent help, they are simply panicked citizens watching the news and following the weather reports. Then, those who participate in the calls are invited to classify them according to categorize. “On the morning of November 7, we received a call from a family saying that the wall of their house had collapsed, and they were stuck on the side. It was a call that we prioritized, and the ground crews were immediately notified. We are also in contact with the NDRF, SURF, navy, coast guard and fire and rescue teams, ” he said. Also, at the State Emergency Operations Center in Ezhilagam on Kamarajar Salai of Chennai (the state-run government control room) prioritizing calls is an important task. In this center, volunteers were trained by the Red Cross to identify and compartmentalize calls. during TNM’s visit on Thursday 11 November. The control room received 13,353 calls between November 6 and November 11. here. They are trained to identify calls requiring urgent attention. Use various parameters, including judging if the caller is in trouble, ”Subbaiyan said. He further explained that calls from people who may have seen a snake entering their compound or gushing out of water, or those residing in a weak facility are immediately reported to their respective teams.On the other hand, priority is given to a finding of flooding on the roads thereafter. The state emergency operations room has 12 people working per shift. There are three towers in all.

Adjacent to the control room is where 12 officials from 12 different state departments sit and monitor calls. “There are officials from the PWD (Department of Public Works), Health, Revenue, Police, Agriculture and Local Government. It is their responsibility to inform and assign their teams.” , said Subbaiyan. Several TV screens are set up across the room control, checking flood coverage from Tamil news channels. Subbaiyan said volunteers monitor news channels and participate in distress calls based on their coverage as needed. Phanindra Reddy, chief secretary of the tax administration, who also oversaw operations, said he also runs WhatsApp groups with other district officials and control rooms. “The control room also has to do with preparing and reviewing IMD forecasts and instructing districts to prepare.We also ask them for reports, ”he said. The two control rooms operate throughout the year. While the Chennai company normally has eight lines in the control room, it was increased to 30 lines on November 6 and November 10 to 45 lines. with more volunteers outsourced from a company. The Control Room of the Greater Chennai Corporation Of the 13,450 complaints to date, the Chennai Corporation reported having successfully dealt with 5,500 complaints.

A quick review of social media platforms shows that several people are still complaining that the lines are busy or that their complaints have not been resolved. Prashant said the control room doesn’t always solve problems, but it’s there to reassure. to cross. When they go to social media and spread their complaint, the panic spreads further. It is therefore important that we choose as many calls as possible and that we tell people that we are listening and that their complaint has been recorded, ”said the CCG Assistant Commissioner.

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