Rashmi Rekha Das

With a few hours left for the Trinity's Rath Yatra to begin, the Odisha Fire Service has mobilized one hydraulic platform, eight motor fire engines, eight water tanker, 15 quick response units, one rescue tender, one crane, three ambulances, 10 pumps for discharging water, five power boats, five underwater diving suits for effective fire protection and rescue duty during Srigundicha and Bahuda Yatra.

This was revealed by DGP of Fire Service Santosh Kumar Upadhyay on Wednesday. He reviewed the arrangements to meet the eventualities in minimum response time.

Briefing the media, Upadhyay said, "Three fire fighting teams well equipped with fire extinguishers will be deployed to avoid possible fire mishaps during Trinity's sojourn Friday. This year, we have engaged more number of fire services personnel keeping inflow of lakh of devotees in mind. As many as 39 fire vehicles including rescue vans and vans meant for sprinkling water to devotees will be deployed as part of measures to make the annual carnival hassle free." 

Besides, the district administration has formed three teams for which 39 fire services personnel have been engaged to tackle probable drowning cases on beach during Rath Yatra.  

Upadhyay also said that 90 life guards and 300 local lifeguards have been deployed for the smooth conduction of the annual extravaganza. Also, 15 quick response teams and six water tanks will be in place to deal with sunstroke related cases.

"As many as 10 fire pumps will be there at Bada Danda to discharge water. A special rescue team will be engaged by Puri Fire Services department for round the clock service to the needy", he added.