Floods are the most common and widespread of all-natural disasters. India is one of the highly flood-prone countries in the world. Around 40 million hectares of land in India are prone to floods as per the National Flood Commission report. Floods cause damage to houses, industries, public utilities, and property resulting in huge economic losses, apart from the loss of lives. Though it is not possible to control the disaster totally, by adopting suitable structural and non-structural measures the flood damages can be minimized.
Let us understands the steps, that must be taken to minimize the damage caused by floods.
1. Adequate warnings to people through the newspaper, radio, television, and channels of media should be provided.
2. Flood-prone courses of major rivers should be identified and cleared in advance.
3. Proper arrangements for evacuation of people should be done well before the occurrence of a flood.
4. Food supplies and medicines should be provided to rehabilitation camps as well as to those still caught in floods.
5. A ban on construction in low-lying areas would prove pivotal in preventing the damage caused by floods.
6. Flood reduction through reforestation, protection of vegetation, clearing of debris from streams and other water-holding areas, conservation of ponds, and lakes, etc goes a long way in decreasing the amount of runoff.
7. Flood diversion is a very important flood control measure. It involves the construction of dams, embankments, and channel improvement.
8. Assistance should be provided by the center govt to all states to draw up disaster management plans at the state, district, block, and village levels.
9. Efforts should be made to build capacity through developing resistance skills, providing encourages to participate in risk reduction programs, provision to finance the different organizations related to disaster management.