The disaster management department has planned to link the data centre of an earthquake early warning system developed by IIT Roorkee with the State Emergency Operation Centre (SEOC) in Dehradun. The system could issue warnings up to a minute before an earthquake occurs, potentially saving hundreds of lives.
Researchers at IIT Roorkee have been working on an earthquake early warning system for North India. Under the project about 100 accelerometers are being installed between Uttarkashi and Joshimath in the Garhwal region.
Currently, 84 sensors have been installed and they are already sending data to the control room at IIT Roorkee.
"A team headed by additional secretary disaster management department visited IIT Roorkee recently and looked at the early warning system control room. They also held discussions with experts from IIT Roorkee on the possibility of linking the early warning system's network with the SEOC so that the information could be shared with the state as well. The experts at IIT Roorkee agreed on doing so and a proposal in this regard would be prepared soon," said an official from the disaster management department.
In case of a large earthquake in Himalayas, most of the places in North India can have a lead time of 20 to 70 seconds before the damaging seismic waves hit, Gairola said.
The system will be trialed on the campus of IIT Roorkee. The campus community will be trained for appropriate response during an earthquake. Mock drills are also being planned with the help of police, army, State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) and National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), said Gairola.