Sunday, 25 December, 2005

Remembrance Week - 26th December, 2005 - 1st January, 2006

WWH Remembrance WeekLast year, on the 26th December, an earthquake, and then a tsunami, killed, wounded, or impoverished hundreds of thousands of people in South Asia.

During the course of the year, other disasters took their toll too. Most devastating of them: Hurricanes Katrina and Rita on the South-East coast of the USA; and another enormous earthquake near Pakistan's border with India.

These disasters took their immediate toll, and, each time, the world tried to help. But as calamity piled upon calamity, there has been a certain amount of fatigue. Perhaps people's stock of goodwill has run low. Perhaps seeing too much suffering hardens us.

But, the fact is, the suffering from those disasters has not ceased. Parts of South Asia have still not recovered from December 26th, 2004. In the USA, normalcy hasn't returned to New Orleans. In Pakistan, thousands are still homeless, and may not survive the harsh Himalayan winter.

They need your help.

Last December and this January, the online community came together as never before to help in the aid efforts in South-East Asia. The lessons learned there were put to use, and improved upon, when the other tragic events of the year unfolded.

Can we harness that goodwill, that togetherness, that willingness to help once more?

The WorldWideHelp group would like you to join us in Remembrance Week. Here's what we suggest you do.

WWH Remembrance WeekUse your blogs, your home pages, your wikis, your newsletters. Link to your favourite charities and NGOs, write a paragraph about them and the work they are doing, and ask your readers to make a donation. (If you'd like to find some more charities and NGOs, please take a look at this page on our TsunamiHelp wiki, this one on our KatrinaHelp wiki, or this one on our QuakeHelp wiki.)

Please link back to this page to help pass the word. You can use the image above.

Please use this Technorati Tag: .
Here's the code:
<a href="" rel="tag">Disaster Remembrance Week</a>

In this post, we have a few more banners and buttons, with intructions on the code you must post to use them.

Saturday, 20 August, 2005

Maharashtra Government Relief and Rehabilitation division

If you'd like to send feedback to the Maharashtra Government's Relief and Rehabilitation division, perhaps about the, ahem, Mumbai Disaster Management Plan, you can use this page. There's also a telephone directory if you want to get in touch direct.

Saturday, 13 August, 2005

Leptospirosis Symptoms

• Abrupt onset of fever, myalgias (muscle pain), and headache
• Dry cough
• Nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea
• Less common symptoms include joint aches, bone pain, sore throat, and abdominal pain
• Conjunctivitis
• Seven to 40 per cent of patients may have muscle tenderness, an enlarged spleen or liver, enlarged lymph glands, sore throat, muscle rigidity, abnormal lung sounds, or rash

Emergency number

BMC Control Room: 22694725/ 4727

Source - Mid-Day

Disease epidemics: some precautions and advice

In the wake of diseases spreading in Mumbai, NDTVhas some advice. An extract:
The health advisory says:
  • Boil drinking water for 10 minutes
  • If you have waded through dirty water, check for cuts and bruises
  • Don't eat outside food
  • Consult doctor for fever, vomiting, breathlessness
  • Don't ignore symptoms that may be that of Leptospirosis, like fever, severe muscle ache and redness of eyes
  • Doxycycline is the drug that cures leptospirosis, but it is not a preventive
  • Avoid self-medication
  • Call Helpline for guidance and help at 108, 22694725/27, 56240194, 56240180, 56240191

Friday, 12 August, 2005

Goonj Volunteers Needed

Jessie from Goonj Mumbai tells me that they are looking for volunteers to help with the sorting of clothes, tomorrow (Saturday, 13 August) and on Monday (15 August). More details here. Please call Jasmine at 9324222219 or mail her at

The collection address is:
RBI Society
A4 Akshay Bldg
(in the lane opp Food Inn)
Andheri West

FAQ on gastroenteritis, dengue, leptospirosis and cholera

With the fears of an epidemic in Mumbai growing, Rediff brings out a useful FAQ on some of the diseases that may strike the city: gastroenteritis, dengue, leptospirosis and cholera. It covers the symptoms, causes, prevention, treatment and complications of each of those, while also having tips for how to deal with affected kids. Have a look.

Wednesday, 10 August, 2005

Tell us your cloudburst stories

For the project I mentioned in this post, we're also looking for first-person accounts of the events of 26th July and the days after that.

Where were you? At home, marooned in office, stranded somewhere between? How did you cope? What did you see? Did anything particularly nice happen to you? Or anything really nasty? Do you have pictures?

If you've blogged it, send me the permalink. If you have an online album, send me the URL. Or email me. Accounts in languages other than English are welcome.

Mail me, Peter Griffin, at zigzackly AT gmail DOT com, and put the words [ThinkMumbai] in the subject line (with the square brackets), to get past the spam filters.

Important: In your mail, I will need you to give me permission to:
1. Publish your story or pictures, in print and online, with NO payment to you. (None of the people involved in the project are making any money from it. Most of us are donating at least our time, if not more.)
2. Edit your contribution if I feel it is necessary.
You will not be giving the me or the project exclusive rights to your writing or photography. You will continue to own the rights to your intellectual property.

Tuesday, 9 August, 2005

Wanted, translators for a non-profit project, (preferably Bombay-based)

Ideally, a Languages department in an ad agency, or a professional translation bureau. Provided you're willing to work for no money on a completely insane deadline. :) Individual offers of help are welcome too.
Some of the people behind this blog are also involved in a project that will bring out a free booklet of emergency information for the city's residents (what the floods revealed is that this kind of info is very difficult to find otherwise), and one other publication, which is being finalised.

The final product will be in four languages: Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati, English.

Most of the content we have so far is in English. So Requirement One is people who can translate from English to the other three langauges.

But there will be original content in all four languages.

To cut to the chase, we need people who can competently translate:
English to Hindi, and Hindi to English
English to Marathi, and Marathi to English
English to Gujarati, and Gujarati to English
Marathi to Hindi, and Hindi to Marathi
Marathi to Gujarati, and Gujarati to Marathi
Hindi to Gujarati, and Gujarati to Hindi

We're also looking for
English to Tamil, Tamil to English
Tamil to Gujarati, Gujarati to Tamil
Tamil to Hindi, Hindi to Tamil
Tamil to Marathi, Marathi to Tamil
Tamil to Gujarati, Gujarati to Tamil
English to Bangla, Bangla to English
Bangla to Gujarati, Gujarati to Bangla
Bangla to Hindi, Hindi to Bangla
Bangla to Marathi, Marathi to Bangla
Bangla to Gujarati, Gujarati to Bangla

It would be ideal if the translators concerned can generate soft copy in all the languages they handle.

We want Bombay-based people because the project is on a manic deadline, and this would save coordination time. However, if we can find at least one person who has more than a passing acquaintance with all four languages, who is willing to coordinate and take responsibility for the translation exercise, we'd be thrilled.

We must tell you that this is a project where all concerned are offering their services gratis, so we'd be looking for people who will help for FREE.

If you can do this, or put us on to people who can, we'd be very grateful.

Mail Peter Griffin at zigzackly AT gmail DOT com, and put the words [ThinkMumbai] in the subject line (with the square brackets), to get past the spam filters.

Monday, 8 August, 2005

Is your child ready for an emergency?

Natural calamities often leave a long-lasting impact on children. They are likely to feel mentally and emotionally disturbed as they witness the loss of their near and dear ones and see their family suffer financial losses.

Is your child ready for an emergency?

Sunday, 7 August, 2005

The ICE campaign - In Case of Emergency

I received this message on email and since this is a good idea for any disaster, I thought of posting it here (hoping it has not been posted before!).


Due to the recent bombing in London and floods in Mumbai, there has been a tremendous push to launch the International "In Case of Emergency" (ICE) campaign.

As you know, many people were injured in these incidents. Many of those injured were found with their cell phones. First responders used the injured person's cell phone to try and locate a family member that they could notify on the injured persons behalf. However the rescuers found it difficult to locate the appropriate person.

Wireless subscribers are now being asked by Public Safety Officials all over the world to store the word "ICE" in their wireless phone address book and put their next of kin's phone number next to it.

In the event of an emergency, this person would be contacted quickly by ambulance and hospital staff. It's just that easy! (Source: BBC News)

Please take a moment to program someone that you would like to be contacted in case of an emergency into your cell phone with the word "ICE". Public Safety officials around the world will know what this means.

Forward it to as many persons you can, this is a good idea.
Do not forget to do it on your mobile first.

Friday, 5 August, 2005

Accessing monetary relief

A typist in my cousin's office lost her husband in the floods of July 26 (he fell in a manhole). Any ideas where she could apply for the state / central government relief? And can she apply for both? Or will she have to choose?

Safe drinking water

Concerns about Safe drinking water in Mumbai grow everyday with the infamous BMC throwing up its arms saying that they cannot help

Here are the links to Typical Sources of Drinking Water Contamination

Water Treatment

Microorganisms, Bacteria and Viruses in drinking water

Is bottled water safe?

Thursday, 4 August, 2005

First aid in times of disasters

Here is a comprehensive list of First Aid measures

Please note that these are links to US websites and services. India does not have a 911 facility.

Another link to generic first aid tips

First Aid tips to help victims of drowning

Mumbai Helpline Numbers

Wednesday, 3 August, 2005

Citizen's Groups & NGOs

Here is a list of Citizen's Groups & NGOs

Please note: Telephone numbers may not be correct.

Animal welfare organisations

Animals have been traumatised by the floods and the rain. Here is a list of animal welfare centres in Mumbai

Here is a related story on the plight of an elephant

Rehabilitation centres in Mumbai

After the fury of the rains and floods are over will come the task of rehabilitating the people who have suffered. Here is a list of Rehabilitation centres in Mumbai

Before All Else, Treat

As a follow-up to this post of Dilip's, Annie has a useful post here about a National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission judgement regarding the treatment of patients in emergencies. True, this judgement was issued in a different context, where the patient was an accident victim and the hospital, which was a private institution, insisted on an upfront deposit despite the production of the victim's Mediclaim policy - but, as Annie says, it may be useful to keep in mind in case there are cases of hospitals turning away patients or delaying their treatment citing administrative or bureaucratic reasons.

Tuesday, 2 August, 2005

Be careful about donating clothes

This was cross-posted on Cloudburst Mumbai.

Uma has some information here about where to go to donate old clothes, but I'd make careful enquiries before donating any, if I were you. When I travelled through the tsunami-affected areas of Tamil Nadu in January this year, one of the common themes I encountered was how donating clothes was a waste, and how no one wanted them and they would just form colourful heaps of garbage on the sides of roads. (And we have enough of those already.) I wrote about it here and here, and Dilip D'Souza, who travelled with me, mentioned it here and here.

One of the main reasons these clothes go waste is that their intended recepients are not beggars, but proud people hit by circumstances who don't necessarily want old, faded hand-me-downs, which are also sometimes inappropriate given the kind of lives they lead. However, if the NGO concerned is making an effort to make those clothes presentable and acceptable to those they are intended for, as the Rotary Club of Chennai did after the tsunami, then it might be worth it. Otherwise they will just end up piled up on the streetside.

Gaurav brought this subject to my attention now, and has posted about it here.

Dry Clothes Please...

I just posted this on Cloudburst Mumbai, but I thought that since the need is so urgent, it would be useful to post it here again: if you have clothes to donate, they are being collected at this address:

Chemical Mazdoor Sabha
No 29/30, 1st Floor, Haji Habib Building
182 Naigaon Cross Road
Dadar East

It's not hard to find. Their request is that you go there between 11 am and 5:30 pm. It's near the Kohinoor Mills and just above a large appliances showroom also called Kohinoor. You have to take the back entrance upstairs, past a garbage dump where dogs, crows and tiny kittens scrounge for food.

Also: does anyone know of any specific relief work being taken up for street animals during this period?

Coping with floods

Coping With Floods, a self-explanatory guidebook by the North Dakota State University. Though their examples are set in the southern US, they're just as applicable here.

Posted by Rahul on Cloudburst Mumbai Blog

PR for Mumbai Help Blog

Judging by the kind of information available online and in newspapers, this blog seems to have the most comprehensive information. Can someone suggest how we can get some PR for this effort.

Comprehensive list of Mumbai Helpline numbers

Here is the comprehensive list of telephone numbers in Mumbai

Police Stations

and so on.

Toes and Tyres

The Mid Day rounded up specialists to tell us what to do after that 5 hour trek home. As also, how to help your car survive a flood.

AID India's Flood Relief Efforts in Mumbai

Cross posted on Cloudburst Mumbai

This in via email from Anup, on behalf of the Association for India's Development (AID).
Association for India's Development (AID) is undertaking various projects and partnering with our NGOs on the ground to help with short and long term flood relief efforts.

Thousands of the poorest of poor have been rendered homeless and many lives and property has been lost..

Please go to the below website, view some of our relief work reports and click on the Donate link on the right to contribute online:

Every little counts...please pass on the message.

Thanks so much!

Warm Regards,
Rajasekhar Jammalamadaka
for AID

The Red Cross needs help

Crossposted on Cloudburst Mumbai. Via NDTV:

The Red Cross needs:
Bedsheets, new clothes, food packets, biscuits, disinfectants, phenyl, milk powder, blankets.

Cheques/Demand Drafts to the Red Cross can be made out to:

Maharashtra State Branch of Indian Red Cross Society, Disaster Relief Account.

Indian Red Cross Society,
Maharashtra State Branch,
141, Shaheed Bhagat Singh Road
Town Hall Compound,
Fort Mumbai.

Contact numbers: 022-22661524 / 22644030 / 22674235

Monday, 1 August, 2005

After a Flood

More information on how to protect yourself and your property during and after a flood, can be found here and here.

Helpline numbers

Rediff has put up a useful list of helpline numbers here. I'm reproducing the list here:
Power Supply
Reliance: 30303030
MSEB: 25686666

Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC)
For emergency complaints like building or wall collapses, call 1916.
For fallen trees, short circuits or fire, call 101 or 23085991.
For drainage related complaints, call 1916.
Drainage control rooms: 23678109 (city), 26146852 (western suburbs) or 25153258 (eastern suburbs)

Central Railway
Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus: 22697330
Dadar: 24143841
Lokmanya Tilak Terminus, Kurla: 26502475, 25298499
Kalyan: 95251-2311499

Western Railway
Call 131 or 22005388

Air India: 28318888
Indian Airlines: 1407
Jet Airways: 56986111
Please continue to give suggestions and information on the comments of the post below.

Sunday, 31 July, 2005

Your suggestions here

Please use the comments section of this post to point us to information that you that you think could be relevant.

You could also get in touch with any of the bloggers behind this effort by clicking on their names under the Contributors section, and, if they have an e-ddress displayed, writing to them directly.

Blood Banks in Mumbai

List of Blood Banks in Mumbai

The phone numbers are not correct. I have tried to contact a few and was given the correct number by MTNL / Tata Indicom.

Will try to get the correct numbers listed here if possible later tonight.

Mumbai Maps

Mumbai Rail Map

Mumbai Road Map

Mumbai Map

Surviving Cyclones

Mumbai is a coastal city and as much as we might pretend that cyclones would never hit the city, the truth is that we will never know. Please remember that Gujarat was hit by cyclones a few years ago.
Here is a cyclone survival guide:


Tropical Cyclones are low pressure systems in the tropics that, in the Southern Hemisphere, have well defined clockwise wind circulations with a region surrounding the centre with gale force winds (sustained winds of 63 km/h or greater with gusts in excess of 90 km/h).
The gale force winds can extend hundreds of kilometres from the cyclone centre. If the sustained winds around the centre reach 119 km/h (gusts in excess 170 km/h). then the system is called a severe tropical cyclone. These are referred to as hurricanes or typhoons in other countries.

The circular eye or centre of a tropical cyclone is an area characterised by light winds and often by clear skies. Eye diameters are typically 40km but can range from under 10km to over 100km. The eye is surrounded by a dense ring of cloud about 16km high known as the eye wall which marks the belt of strongest winds and heaviest rainfall.
Structure of a Cyclone (Schematic)

Tropical Cyclones derive their energy from the warm tropical oceans and do not form unless the sea-surface temperature is above 26.5°C, although, once formed, they can persist over lower sea-surface temperatures. Tropical cyclones can persist for many days and may follow quite erratic paths. They usually dissipate over land or colder oceans.


The severity of a tropical cyclone is described in terms of categories ranging from 1 to 5 related to the zone of maximum winds. An estimate of cyclone severity is included in all tropical advices. Remember that the Warning Service is not designed to give an exact statement of conditions at individual locations but will give a general idea of the expected worst conditions. Using this severity scale, communities will be able to assess the degree of cyclone threat and take appropriate action. Damage will vary depending upon factors such as:

* How far you are from the zone of maximum winds;
* How exposed the location is;
* Building standards;
* Vegetation type; and
* Resultant flooding.

The category does not refer to the amount of flooding or storm tides. If a storm tide is expected it will be mentioned separately in the cyclone warning.

Tropical Cyclones are dangerous because they produce destructive winds, heavy rainfall with flooding and damaging storm surges that can cause inundation of low-Iying coastal areas.

Cyclones have wind gusts in excess of 90 km/h around their centres and, in the most severe cyclones, gusts can exceed 280 km/h. These very destructive winds can cause extensive property damage and turn airborne debris into potentially lethal missiles. It is important to remember that, during the passage of the cyclone centre or "eye", there will be a temporary lull in the wind, but that this will soon be replaced by destructive winds from another direction.

Heavy rainfall associated with the passage of a tropical cyclone can produce extensive flooding. This can cause further damage and death by drowning. The heavy rain can persist as the cyclone moves inland and decays, hence flooding due to a decayed cyclone can occur a long way from the tropical coast as the remains of a cyclone move into central and southern parts of the continent.

The destructive winds accompanying tropical cyclones also produce phenomenal seas, which are dangerous both for vessels out at sea and those moored in harbours. These seas can also cause serious erosion of foreshores.
Storm Surge/Tide

Potentially, the most destructive phenomenon associated with tropical cyclones that make landfall is the storm surge. Storm surge is a raised dome of water about 60 to 80 km across and typically about 2 to 5m higher than the normal tide level. If the surge occurs at the same time as a high tide then the area inundated can be quite extensive, particularly along low-lying coastlines.

The information in this checklist was prepared by Emergency Management Australia in consultation with State/Territory Emergency Services to help protect you and your property.

* Check with your local council or your building control authority to see if your home has been built to cyclone standards.
* Check that the walls, roof and eaves of your home are secure.
* Trim treetops and branches well clear of your home (get council permission).
* Preferably fit shutters, or at least metal screens, to all glass areas.
* Clear your property of loose material that could blow about and possibly cause injury or damage during extreme winds.
* In case of a storm surge/tide warning, or other flooding, know your nearest safe high ground and the safest access route to it.
* Prepare an emergency kit containing:
o a portable battery radio, torch and spare batteries;
o water containers, dried or canned food and a can opener;
o matches, fuel lamp, portable stove, cooking gear, eating utensils; and
o a first aid kit and manual, masking tape for windows and waterproof bags.
* Keep a list of emergency phone numbers on display.
* Check neighbours, especially if recent arrivals, to make sure they are prepared.

* Re-check your property for any loose material and tie down (or fill with water) all large, relatively light items such as boats and rubbish bins.
* Fill vehicles' fuel tanks. Check your emergency kit and fill water containers.
* Ensure household members know which is the strongest part of the house and what to do in the event of a cyclone warning or an evacuation.
* Tune to your local radio/TV for further information and warnings.
* Check that neighbours are aware of the situation and are preparing.

Depending on official advice provided by your local authorities as the event evolves; the following actions may be warranted.
* If requested by local authorities, collect children from school or childcare centre and go home.
* Park vehicles under solid shelter (hand brake on and in gear).
* Put wooden or plastic outdoor furniture in your pool or inside with other loose items.
* Close shutters or board-up or heavily tape all windows. Draw curtains and lock doors.
* Pack an evacuation kit of warm clothes, essential medications, baby formula, nappies,
valuables, important papers, photos and mementos in waterproof bags to be taken with
your emergency kit. Large/heavy valuables could be protected in a strong cupboard.
* Remain indoors (with your pets). Stay tuned to your local radio/TV for further information.

Based on predicted wind speeds and storm surge heights, evacuation may be necessary.
Official advice will be given on local radio/TV regarding safe routes and when to move.
* Wear strong shoes (not thongs) and tough clothing for protection.
* Lock doors; turn off power, gas, and water; take your evacuation and emergency kits.
* If evacuating inland (out of town), take pets and leave early to avoid heavy traffic, flooding and wind hazards.
* If evacuating to a public shelter or higher location, follow police and State/Territory Emergency Services directions.
* If going to a public shelter, take bedding needs and books or games for children.
* Leave pets protected and with food and water.

* Disconnect all electrical appliances. Listen to your battery radio for updates.
* Stay inside and shelter {well clear of windows) in the strongest part of the building,
i.e. cellar, internal hallway or bathroom. Keep evacuation and emergency kits with you.
* If the building starts to break up, protect yourself with mattresses, rugs or blankets under a
strong table or bench or hold onto a solid fixture, e.g. a water pipe.
* Beware the calm 'eye'. If the wind drops, don't assume the cyclone is over; violent winds
will soon resume from another direction. Wait for the official 'all clear'.
* If driving, stop (handbrake on and in gear) - but well away from the sea and clear of trees,
power lines and streams. Stay in the vehicle.

* Don't go outside until officially advised it is safe.
* Check for gas leaks. Don't use electric appliances if wet.
* Listen to local radio for official warnings and advice.
* If you have to evacuate, or did so earlier, don't return until advised. Use a recommended route and don't rush.
* Beware of damaged power lines, bridges, buildings, trees, and don't enter floodwaters.
* Heed all warnings and don't go sightseeing. Check/help neighbours instead.
* Don't make unnecessary telephone calls.

Low Lying Areas in Mumbai

This from the Mid-Day:

Mumbai's low lying areas
• Colaba Lalit Building to Badhwar Park
• Kalbadevi Kalbadevi Road near Cotton Exchange, Ghodaghadi Junction MK Road,
• Pydhonie Nalbazaar to Alankar Cinema
• Girgaon Khetwadi main road, Bank Road, Wilson College, Nana Chowk, Grant Road Junction, Babulnath Road, Duncan Road
• Tardeo Tardeo Circle, Mahalaxmi Junction, Warden Road to American Embassy, Nepeansea Road, Keshavrao Khade Marg
• Nagpada Mumbai Central Junction, Jacob Cricle to Chinchpokli
• Byculla Junction Byculla Junction, Kalachowkie Junction, Albert Circle
• Bhoiwada Hindmata to Bharatmata, Parel to Elphinstone Bridge
• Bunder Ray Road Junction bridge and E Saade Point
• Worli Poonam Signal, Bavla Masjid to NM Joshi Marg, Wadacha Naka, Worli Naka, E Moses Road Junction, Senapati Bapat Marg to Nehru Sceince Centre
• Mahim LJ Road Junction, Sitladevi Temple Road
• Matunga Matunga Police Station to Sion Hospital Junction, Dadar Circle
• Kurla LBS Marg to Sonapur Lane
• Mulund Mulund Subway
• Bandra Milan Subway, Khar Subway, Linking Road, Gazebo Restaruant to Khar Telephone Exchange, Chitrakaar Dhurander Marg, Khar Danda
• DN Nagar Andheri Subway, SV Road Andheri Market to Amboli Naka, Oshiwara Bridge, JP Road Junction and SV Road, JVPD Circle
• Malad Malad Subway
• Goregaon Nirlon Company to Cama Estate Services Road
• Borivli Road Dahisar Subway, Mithi River in Dahisar

How did the waters recede?

• On S V Road and Link Road it traveled viz major and minor nallahs to Mithi river/Arabian Sea.

• Also along the Western Express Highway and subway to Bandra pumping station via an interconnected network

• From Churchgate to Globe Mill Complex, Worli, to the Love Grove Pumping Station and then to the city

• Most of the water at Colaba was treated at the Colaba pumping station and then let into the Arabian Sea

courtesy: Cloudburst Mumbai

Oxfam responds to Mumbai Floods

International agency Oxfam's emergency assessment team is now in the western Maharashtra district of India responding to the worst flooding in the area for three decades.

The Oxfam International emergency team is urgently gathering information on the ground to determine the needs of people affected by the flooding in Mumbai and the surrounding areas. The Oxfam team has been responsible for evacuating people stranded in the flood water and plans to start its relief effort in the next few days once a needs assessment has been carried out.

More than 800 people are believed to have died in Mumbai and a further 5,000 have been rescued from the coastal regions. Thousands remain trapped in their homes and a rescue operation is underway.

"Oxfam is on the ground gathering vital information so we know how best to respond to the needs of people. Our priority is to ensure that more people don't loose their lives because of this disaster and that they have the basic essentials such as access to clean drinking water", said Oxfam aid worker Aditi Kapoor.

Heavy rainfall in the area over the past few days has lead to widespread flooding with more than 26 inches of rain, the heaviest ever recorded in Indian falling on Tuesday in Mumbai. Half of Maharashtra has been affected by the floods and the situation in the coastal region has worsened.

Oxfam partners are reporting a landslide in the Mahad and Raigad areas of western Maharashtra that may have killed dozens of people.

"The major rivers flowing through the city have burst their banks causing flooding in the slum areas adjoining the river as well as to buildings and apartments. There has been widespread damage and we anticipate the death toll will increase over the coming hours and days. Oxfam and other agencies are in a race against time to save lives" said Kapoor.

For more information please contact Shaista Aziz in the Oxfam Media Unit on +44 (0) 7810814980, Aditi Kapoor on 0091 9810306200 or Marlene McIntyre on 00961 407515559

Find bus routes in Mumbai

Here is an interesting link to find the bus routes in Mumbai.

On Wikipedia

Wikipedia has an entry for Maharashtra floods. I have added Mumbai Help and Cloudburst Mumbai in the References section.

My first time on Wikipedia. I can't describe it, but somehow I felt like first time on stage... full of butterflies inside my stomach, goosebumps, previewing 5 times etc..etc.. Wiki-fright, anyone? :p

Toll free number for the Regional Met Dept

The Indian Met Dept's Mumbai Centre, Colaba has a toll-free number for weather information:

"...Interactive Voice Response System for making weather information available to the users over telephone. The IVRS can be accessed, round the clock, by dialing Toll Free Number 1600 180 1717 from any location in the states of Maharashtra, Gujarat and Goa... After the selection of language, the user can select the city by pressing 1 for Mumbai...".

More details (on how to access other cities) at this link.
[Note: I haven't been able to try this out yet, so I hope the info on this site is up to date]

Online Weather Reports for Mumbai

Here are some webpages on weather reports & forecasts for Mumbai (and the rest of the region):

* The Indian Met Dept's page for Mumbai
* The Met Dept's Regional Mumbai Centre
* India Server
* Yahoo! Weather
* National Informatics Centre's Weather page
*'s Mumbai page
[Useful if, like me, you have limited access to TV weather reports but can log on to the WWW]

Managing Urban Sewage - An Introductory Guide for Decision-makers

Shangai and Manhattan all rolled into one eh?

Suggest the blogger world provide links such as these

to the collective politicians and bureaucrats so that they learn the basics.

National Disaster Management website

Hurray! there is a website by the Ministry of Home Affairs

We are impressed. But has anyone in that ministry bothered to find out if the people that be have implemented even 1 % of the so called plan?

Maybe it is time for the people - read as the ones who took it upon themselves to help to do what it takes to be prepared for the next big one.

Important Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai phone numbers.

Via email from jaygee.

You can find a Ward-by-Ward list of Assistant Municipal Commissioners here (can't guarantee how up to date it is, since the list has a line at the bottom mentioning a 2002 update) and Municipal Councillors names, addresses and telephone numbers here.

(Strange that the home page of the "Official Site" of the MCGM makes no mention of the events of last week. It does have a marquee listing a new email address for sales tax, though, alternating between some lame slogans.)

Saturday, 30 July, 2005

Precautions to avoid an epidemic

The BMC has issued a red alert, warning that there might be "an epidemic of diseases". Mid Day reproduces the following precautions:
• Diseases to look out for are diarrhoea, dysentery, leptospirosis and typhoid

• Water should be filtered and boiled before drinking. Once the water starts boiling, continue boiling it for at least 10 minutes.

If required, chlorine tablets should be used for disinfecting water. They are available at municipal ward offices, health posts and dispensaries

• Do not eat exposed food

• Don’t self-prescribe medication. Though a dose of doxycycline is advisable to prevent leptospirosis, consult a doctor. Irregular use of antibiotics can have side effects

• In case of fever, go to municipal dispensaries, health posts or hospitals for treatment. Do not postpone treatment

• Do not walk around in stagnant water. Use gumboots for protection from contaminated water. If there is contact with stagnant water, then wash up immediately

• Keep the area around your house clean.

• In case of emergencies like landslides, floods, contaminated water in water taps, no water supply, contact: Control room: 108 or 22632315.

Donations of Clothes...

are being collected at

Chemical Mazdoor Sabha,
Haji Habib Building,
Room No 29/30,
1st Floor,
182, Naigaon Cross Road,
Dadar East, Bombay 14.

Between 11 am and 5:30 pm.

Pure Safe Water

Eureka Forbes has announced in today's ToI that pure safe water is available free at Aquaguard Centres.

Also free service for your Aquaguard for the next ten days.

Their helpline: 39883333
You can also apparently call this number to consult their microbiologist about water-borne diseases and precautions to take.

Centres at:

- Social Welfare Assn, Kherwadi
- St John's Church, Marol
- Jain Temple, Kanti Nagar, J.B.Nagar
- Select Club HP Petrol Pumps
- More being set up.

Oxygen suppliers

Bharat Oxygen Corporation
168 L B S Marg Kurla Mumbai-400070
Tel.: 25141593

Tel.: 28342439

Industrial Oxygen Company Ltd
2nd Floor ,56 Jolly Maker Chambers Nariman Point Mumbai-400021
Tel.: 22026314

Indo Gases
S B Marg Lower Parel Mumbai-400013
Tel.: 24925936

Kumar Oxygen
Gala No C-6 Road No 32
Wagle Estate
Tel.: 25822691

Tel.: 26206581
Prakash Oxygen
Radha Raman Kunj
24 Station Road
Tel.: 26493865
Pamarox Pvt Ltd
Patel Sadan, 40-C
Off.Pedder Road
Tel.: 23868267
Soyuz Trading Corporation
33 S K Mension 1st Floor
Kolsa Street Pydhunie
Tel.: 23436235

Saroj Surgical Supplies
1/18 Taredo Air Conditioned Markets
Tel.: 24944023

Sanghi Oxygen Bombay Pvt Ltd
Mani Mahal Building
11\21 Mathew Road
Tel.: 23634852

Sanghi Oxygen
Mahakali Road Andheri E
Tel.: 28341499

Tel.: 23471189

The Laboratory
141 Noman Manzil, Opp Everest Bldg,
Tardeo Rd.
Tel.: 24941332

Tiwari Shitala Prasad
16 Divine Express Co Op Housing Society
Mulund East
Tel.: 25601783

List of Chemists

Nair Medico Nr Nair Hospital Lal Chimney Cmp, Dr.a.nair Road, Agripada, Agripada 400011 Tel.No:3091186

Mukund Medical and General Stores 13 Mukund Nagar Co Op Hsg Soc, Andheri Kurla Road Andheri(East) 400059 Tel.No:8371104

Dinesh Medical & General Stores Opp. Bhagwati Hospital Borivali (West) Tel.No:8952993 Noble Chemists 123, New Charni Road, Sir Harkisondas Hospital, Prarthana Samaj Charni Road 400004 Tel.No:3853130

Sheetal Medical & General Stores Near Shashikant Hospital, 82-A Chembur Rly.Station Road, Chembur 400071 Tel.No:5554461

Life-n-care Drug Stores Ground Floor, Anant Niwas, Shivaji Park Keluskar Road, Dadar(West) 400028 Tel.No:4464246

Bhavani Medical & General Stores Sardar House, 173, Rajawadi Road, Ghatkopar(East) 400077 Tel.No:5128235

Noble Chemists Hind Mahasabha Hospital Ghatkopar(West) 400086 Tel.No:5153260 Milan Medical L.B.S.Marg, Near Sarvodaya Hospital Ghatkopar(West) 400086 Tel.No:5152727/8

Mahalaxmi Medical L.t.rd No.5 Opp Gurudwara, Near New Municipal Hospital, Goregaon(West) 400062 Tel.No:8723011

Omair Medical & General Stores 2 Rippon Apts., Jogeshwari(West) 400086 Tel.No:6280156

Khar Medical Stores Station Road Khar 400052 Tel.No:6461329

Sheetal Chemists Opp. Sheetal Theatre, Kurla 400070 Tel.No:5138339

Day and night National Chemists. Vir Savarkar Marg, Near Hinduja Hospital, Mahim 400016 Tel.No:4440079

Kalpesh Medical Store Balubhai Niwas, Daftari Road Malad(East) 400097 Tel.No:8834418

Bhaktivedanta Hospital Sector 1, Shristi Complex Meera Road(East) Tel.No:8101884 Real Chemists Shop 51 Karad Arcade, Opp Bombay Hospital New Marine Lines 400020 Tel.No:2004211

Bombay Chemists Kakad Arcade, Near Bombay Hospital New Marine Lines 400020 Tel.No:2001173/2072823

Royal Chemist Opposite Children's Wadia Hospital Parel 400012 Tel.No:4115028

Shreejee Medico Chemist Acharya Dhonde Marg Opp, Wadia Children Hospital Parel 400012 Tel.No:4139709

The Parel Chemists 4-a Lahar Bros Mansion,Opp Kem Hospital, Parel 400012 Tel.No:4131299

National Chemists Laher Bros.Mansion, Shop No-2, 3, 4, 5, opp. KEM Hospital Parel 400012 Tel.No:4136860, Fax: 4130164

Carmichael Medical Stores 19 Pedder Road Next To Jaslok Hospital Peddar Road 400026 Tel.No:4946948

Noble Medicals S. V. Road, Santacruz(West) 400054 Tel.No:6001570

Shiv Chemists Shop No 8, 206 Shiv Mahal, In Road East, Sion 400022 Tel.No:4141251

Empire Chemists Empire House, S. V. Road, Irla Vile Parle(West) 400056 Tel.No:6718970, 6712186

Dilip Drug House C/O Nanavati Hospital, S. V. Road, Vile Parle(West) 400056 Tel.No:6182255, Ext 527

Ambulance services list

Arya Samaj
Tel. : 2648 2800 / 2646 2075
Andheri West
Tel. : 2624 3675 / 2625 3599 / 2625 5264
Tel. : 2307 6113
Bombay City Corporation
Tel. : 2201 4295
Tel. : 2556 9990
Tel. : 2361 0836
Tel. : 2422 9531 / 2422 9556
Tel. : 2209 5611
Dhobi Talao (Marine Lines)
Tel. : 2430 5847 Mahim
Tel. : 2430 5847
Tel. : 2515 3260
Tel. : 2872 1061
Golden Hour Projects
Tel. : 2422 2040 / 2430 8888
Tel. : 2837 2859
Khar West
Tel. : 2648 5676
Tel. : 2209 5611
Lamington Road
Tel. : 2388 7758
LTMG Hospital, Sion
Tel. : 2407 6381 UPTO 89
Mulund East
Tel. : 2564 5385
Mulund West
Tel. : 2567 5995
Municipal Ambulance
Tel. : 2307 7324, 2307 9643
Muslim Ambulance Society
Tel. : 2375 5645, 2375 9846
Tel. : 2492 3491, 2492 5788
Saifee Ambulance
Tel. : 2347 1189, 2346 6520
Shivaji Park
Tel. : 2430 5847
Tel. : 2648 2800 Sion
Tel. : 2407 6381 Thane
Tel. : 2533 1552 Vile Parle (West)
Tel. : 2620 7254

Accident cases only: 102

Heart Attack: 105

24 hrs Ambulance Services (Fort): 2266-2059 / 2913

Ambulance Service (New Mumbai): 2766-9189

Andheri Vyapari Mitra Mandal (Andheri): 2832-0021 / 2832-0026 / 2625-3599

Arya Samaj (Fort): 2261-2388 / 2262-1464

Arya Samaj Mandir Hall (Santacruz): 2648-2800

Asha Parekh Hospital (Santacruz): 2649-3737 / 2649 1203

Ashok Mastkar Ambulance (Dadar): 2422-9531 / 2422-9556

Ashraya Charitable Trust (Mumbai): 2388-7758

Asmita Bhatiya (Tardeo): 2309-4050 / 2307-2711

Asmita (Jogeshwari): 2832-7561

Balaji Ambulance (Day and Night - Ghatkopar East): 2513-5417

Bhagvati Hospital (Borivili): 2893-2461 / 2893-2462

Bharti Ed. Committee (Mulund West): 2561-3180 / 2561-3329

Blue Star Ambulance Garage (Warden Road): 2367-1331 / 2367-7518

Bombay Hospital (Marine Lines): 2208-7128 / 2206-7309 / 206-7676 / 208-7128

Bombay Samarpan Relief Service (Bandra): 2642-2076

Cooper Hospital (Vile Parle): 2620-7254 / 2620-5892

Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj (Chembur): 2551-4488 / 2551-0897

Citizens' Committee (Ghatkopar): 2512-8744 / 2513-1884

Day and Night Ambulance (Goregaon): 2873-2823

Divine Life (Malad): 2889-1484

Dr R.N. Cooper (Dadar): 2430-5847

Edward Jens. (Byculla): 2307-1927

Emergency Ambulance Service (Dadar): 2430-8888 / 2422-2040

Girgaon Public Centre (Girgaon): 2388-1374

Golden Hour Project
Dadar: 2430-8888 / 2422-2040
Khar: 2646-1278
Mulund: 2564-5385

Harishrai Jakhand. (Bhandup): 2560-1634 / 2560-1635

Hindu Relief Committee (Ghatkopar): 2515-3260 / 2515-3460

Indira Ambulance Service (Goregaon): 2872-1993 / 2873-7372

Infectious Diseases (M.G. Marg): 2307-7324 / 2307-9643

Inlex (Chembur): 2551-4266 / 2551-4268

Jai Ambe Welfare Society (Borivili): 2805-1999 / 2805-0999

Jalaram Baba (Bhuleshwar): 2206-9601 / 2208-1237

Jivan Vilas (Andheri): 2834-0476 / 2834-3772

Kala Yuvak Mandal (Mulund): 2560-1185 / 2560-3436

Lonica Ambulance Service (Vile Parle): 2611-4395 / 2613-1245

Mithaben Nenshi (Dadar): 2414-5034

Maitri Mandal Trust (Colaba): 2283-3504

Maratha Kala Mandir (Mumbai Central): 2371-2460

Municipal Ambulances: 2307-7324 / 2307-9643

Parsi Ambulance Service: 2262-1666

Sion Hospital (Sion): 2407-2737 / 4207-6381

St. John Services 2266-2913

After 944 mm

The Indian Express Newsline has some information and advice:

- About 25,000 homes are still without power.

- All flights, both domestic and international, have resumed from Chatrapati Shivaji Airport from Friday.

- On Central Railway, no outstation trains will leave CST on Saturday. All Western Railway trains are running on schedule. Konkan Railway closed for traffic. All major highways into the city, including the Mumbai-Pune Expressay, are open.

- MTNL phones disrupted on 26 and 27 July have been restored in most areas.

- Reliance power supply helpline: 30303030

- MSEB power supply helpline: 25686666

- BMC emergency complaints: 1916

- Fallen trees, short cicuits, fire: call 101 or 23085991

- BMC's Drainage control rooms: 23678100 (city), 26146852 (western suburbs), 25153258 (eastern suburbs)

- Central Railways: 134 or 22624711

- Western Railway: 131 or 22005388

- Air India: 28318888

- Indian Airlines: 1407

- Jet Airways Mumbai: 56986111

Maharashtra Government helpline

The state government has set up a 24-hour helpline.

The numbers are 22027990 and 22793551. (Numbers via Mumbai Mirror's useful information page.)

[Lifted from Amit's post here.]

Resources and essential services in Mumbai

Karmayog, a "site linking Mumbai-based nonprofits and volunteers", has got a section on their site that deals with the aftermath of the floods. They state their objectives thus:
a) asking for support - of materials, services, volunteers, money
b) offering support - government, corporates, ngo's, individuals, lists
c) examples of what happened - personal stories, photos, published reports.
d) suggestions and ideas and reasons - the type of letters you would send to a newspaper
e) to be used as a nodal point for pan-Mumbai orgs like AGNI, Rotary Clubs, Lion Clubs, all schools, etc.? e.g. helpline, tie-up with FM stations or police stations or railway stations, etc.
They have a useful list of resources, including 24-hour chemists, ambulance services, hospitals, police stations, free medical services and other essential services. They also have a good description of how the local administration is set up, with ward-by-ward listings.

(Link via email from Falstaff.)

Friday, 29 July, 2005

On Leptospirosis dangers

For those of you who have walked through water, it is advisable to take Doxycycline 100 mg 2 tablets daily for 3 days along with Becosules tablets 2 tablets daily for 3 days as a prophylactic medicine against leptospirosis.

It is necessary that you take the complete course of medication.

WARNING: Please consult your doctor before taking any medication.

Driving in flood waters

  • If you live in an area where flooding may occur, move your vehicle to higher ground if flooding is expected. As well as the risk of damage to your vehicle by leaving it in a flooded area, it may also be a hazard or cause obstruction to emergency services.
  • Do not drive unless your journey is absolutely necessary.
  • If you have to drive in a flooded area take care. Do not attempt to drive through water if you are unsure of the depth.
  • Don't drive through fast-moving water, such as at a flooded bridge approach – your car could be swept away
  • Drive slowly and steadily to avoid creating a bow wave, and allow on-coming traffic to pass first.
  • Keep the engine revving by slipping the clutch otherwise water in the exhaust could stall the engine.
  • Modern vehicles are fitted with catalytic converters in the exhaust system. The catalyst normally works at high temperatures and may crack if it is submerged in water. Replacement catalysts are expensive.
  • The air intake on many modern cars is located low down at the front of the engine bay and it only takes a small quantity of water sucked into the engine to cause serious damage. All engines are affected but turbo-charged and diesel engines are most vulnerable.
  • Be considerate – driving through water at speeds above a slow crawl can result in water being thrown onto pavements, soaking pedestrians or cyclists.
  • If your car stalls, immediately abandon it and climb to higher ground. Watch your footing. Just six inches of fast-moving flood water can sweep a person off his or her feet.
  • Test your brakes as soon as you can after driving through water.
  • If the vehicle has been stood in the flooded area for any prolonged period contact your local dealer for further advice.
  • If the vehicle has only been in a flood for a short period, drive with extreme caution and take the car to be checked at the earliest opportunity.

What should you do after a flood?

  • FIRST STEP: If you are unable to stay in your home, make sure to say where you can be reached.
  • To make filing your claim easier, take photos of any water in the house and save damaged personal property. If necessary, place these items outside the home. An insurance adjuster will need to see what's been damaged in order to process your claim.
  • Check for structural damage before re-entering your home. Don't go in if there is a chance of the building collapsing.
  • Upon re-entering your property, do not use matches, cigarette lighters or other open flames since gas may be trapped inside. If you smell gas or hear hissing, open a window, leave quickly, and call the gas company from a neighbor's home.
  • Keep power off until an electrician has inspected your system for safety.
  • Check for sewage and water line damage. If you suspect damage, avoid using the toilets and the tap and call a plumber.
  • Throw away any food -- including canned goods -- that has come in contact with floodwaters.
  • Until local authorities declare your water supply to be safe, boil water for drinking and food preparation.
  • Make sure to follow local building codes and ordinances when rebuilding. Use flood-resistant materials and techniques to protect your property from future flood damage.

Major hospitals in Mumbai

Jaslok Hospital & Research Centre
15 Dr G Deshmukh Marg
Bhulabai Desai Road
Tel.No:56573333; 56573093; 56573010; 23533333

Breach Candy Hospital
60 Bulabai Desai Road

J J Hospital

Hinduja Hospital
Veer Savarkar Marg
Mahim 400016
Tel.No:4449199, 4451515, 4452222

Bombay Hospital
Bombay Hospital Avenue
Marine Lines

K.E.M. Hospital

Some Tips

Bombay, or anywhere else... being prepared, and keeping your wits about you will make all the difference.

  1. Memorise a few phone numbers: Friends, relatives, colleagues - anyone will help most gladly.
  2. Try to plough on, but be reasonable: If you're wading through waist-high water (or more!) for a long time, check with people around if there's an alternate route.
  3. If you find a vehicle, ask around if someone else wants to go with you - even part of the way. The strangest irony is to see thousands walking on roads, while vehicles go by with one occupant.
  4. If you take any medicines, carry atleast an additional day's dose on your person, always.
  5. Carry food, water, money, your phone (in a ziplock bag, if it is raining), medicines (if any). And nothing else. Travel light.
  6. If you're in an unfamiliar city, keep emergency numbers with you.

Surviving Mumbai


40 inches of rain can bring Mumbai to its knees. Here is an attempt to list articles, addresses, people, places, anything that will help when disaster hits Mumbai next time.

This is a forum of like minded people who want to Survive Mumbai.