A 10-day advanced technical rescue and scuba diving course was launched by the Andhra Pradesh State Disaster Response and Fire Services Department in the Aqua Devils Welfare Association premises on Wednesday on the banks of the Krishna. In all, 40 qualified firemen are undergoing training under the guidance of experts from Mumbai and the US. Speaking at the inaugural function, Disaster Management commissioner M.V. Seshagiri Babu said the State government gave utmost importance to rescue and relief operations.
“As nine districts of the 13 are identified as vulnerable to disasters, there is an urgency to meet the unforeseen consequences head-on,” he said. “People still remember how we swiftly reacted to Hudhud cyclone, and we need to be prepared well in advance.”
He said these 40 firemen would undergo training to tackle floods, cyclones, fires and road and train accidents.
“They will also be taught how to use ropes and inflated boats in their operations.”
He said RS30 crore had been earmarked to provide the department advanced fire-fighting and disaster management equipment and for taking up advanced training classes.
Director-General of Fire Services K. Satyanarayana said these trained personnel would be sent to Odisha for three months for advanced training at sea and later sent to Kolkata for one month, where they would undergo an intensive training in an advanced institution. “These 40 persons will don the role of trainers once they complete their training schedule and they, in turn, will impart knowledge to other employees. We have 2,800 employees, and we are planning to make them qualified personnel in rescue operations,” he said.