Odisha to sign MoU for early lightning warning system soon: SRC

Bhubaneswar: Concerned over rise in the number of casualties due to lightning strike incidents, Odisha government will soon sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with US-based Lightning analysing system ‘Earth Network’.

Informing about the development, Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) Bishnupada Sethi stated that the agreement with the US-basd firm will be signed this week.

The firm will start the process of installation of lightning sensors with the available equipment at the earliest so that updates of possible lightning strikes can be known at least an hour in advance.

The crucial information can then be disseminated through various social media platforms, television so that people can be alerted if they are in the lightning strike zone or not. This can help people to move to safer places.

“There are plans to send lightning strike warning and alert through SMSes in subsequent phase as developing an application will take some time,” Sethi said.

The SRC further informed that lightning sensors will be installed at prominent places across the State. Efforts will also be initiated to install lightning arrestors in high rise buildings and shelter centers.

A scientific survey will be conducted for the installation of lightning sensors as well.

As per long-term strategy to minimize the loss of human life and property due to lightning, Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (PCCF) has already instructed forest officers for conducting plantation drives of palm trees.

Official sources said, as lightning usually hits the tallest object first, palm tree will work as a conductor which can reduce the number of deaths.

(Photo source: The Independent)