ICTLT Recommends Setting Up Lightning & Thunderstorm Centre In Odisha

The recently concluded International Conference on Lightning and Thunderstorm (ICTLT) has recommended setting up a dedicated Lightning and Thunderstorm Centre in Odisha, on account of the high number of deaths caused by lightning strikes in the state. Approximately one-fourth of the total deaths recorded in the country due to lightning strikes take place in Odisha.

As per the proposals, the state should initiate talks with the centre to facilitate a joint collaboration between the Union Ministry of Earth Science and Odisha State Disaster Management Authority (OSDMA). Experts at the conference discussed measures to get a prior warning on possible strike zones through the use of siren, media, or mobile phones as it would go a long way in reducing the number of casualties.

Specific importance was also laid on creating awareness about the procedures to be followed when caught in such circumstances. It was also decided that citizens would be trained to report volatile weather and lightning activity in their respective blocks through appropriate communication channels so that guidelines on caution can be disseminated to the public.

The ICTLT conference was organised jointly by the Centre for Environment and Climate (CEC) of SOA University and OSDMA from 17th to 19th January. The conference recommendations, if implemented in the right spirit, can make a difference to the staggeringly high, premature death figures.

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