June 18-21, 2006
Tsunami occurred on 26th December, 2004 and in India more than 8000 people were killed due to the massive attack. The worst affected districts in Tamil Nadu were Viz., Velankanni, Nagapattinam and Cuddalore, Tamil Nadu, India. Official sources said that due to massive death of animals and human beings, the public health has been affected/spoiled and it will cause further outbreak of infectious diseases like diarrhea, cholera and mosquito transmitting diseases. After a week there were incidents of outbreak of mosquito transmitting diseases such as malaria, and dengue. Tsunami had caused a mixing of animal debris in the breeding ground of mosquito vector and had facilitated easy development of mosquito vectors and further transmission of diseases in these affected areas such Velankanni, Nagapattinam and Cuddalore, Tamil Nadu, India. In anticipation off occurrence of the above incidence at the Tsunami affected areas of Tamil Nadu and as we had biopesticides in our hand which stimulated us to proceed to Tsunami affected areas of Tamil Nadu for the spray operations to control mosquitoes. The Team from Zoology Department had visited the most Tsunami affected areas of Velankanni and Nagapattinam of Tamil Nadu on 5.1.2005 to 9.1.2005. The team sprayed biopesticides for the control of mosquito vector of malaria, dengue fever at water stagnant areas of Cesspool ditches and streets of these villages. It is important to note that the biopesticides, which was carried by the team, was prepared by Department of Zoology, Bharathiar University, India. After 15 days there was again massive outbreak of flies, which had emerged from the bodies in the mass burial grounds as well as contaminated environment at the Tsunami affected areas. Hence, the team has also intensively sprayed at flies breeding habitats of Tsunami affected areas of Vellankanni and Nagapattinam. The team has also sprayed specific combination of biopesticides at the various rehabilitation centers and temporary shelters of Tsunami affected areas at Nagapattinam. The bio-pesticides are a right combination of herbals and have antibiotic, antiviral, antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. Spray operations had been useful to kill the microorganisms at the unused areas of the shelter. The residue of the spray operations will further be useful as disinfectant of the environment at the temporary shelters at the Tsunami affected areas in Tamil Nadu, and Pondicherry, India. After 20 and 25 days of Tsunami incidence, there were epidemics of chicken pox and dermal diseases recorded at Nagapattinam and Cuddalore, Tamil Nadu, India. Since, we were keenly watching the post-tsunami health hazards through news papers and media; we had also visited the Tsunami affected areas of Cuddalore and Pondicherry and sprayed the biopesticides at the worst affected villages at Cuddalore and Pondicherry, India. Management plans and awareness programme should be adapted for the control and prevention of mosquito, flies and other disease causing organisms at the Tsunami affected areas by following these strategies. i) Avoid stagnant water for the prevention of mosquito breeding need good environment (free from garbage and plant animal debris) for control of flies (ii) Public toiletry facilities to be improved. (iv) Stop usage of old cloths, from others and (v) Good drainage facilities.
Kadarkarai Murugan, "Tsunami Relief Work - Biopesticide Spray Operations - A Case Study" in "Geohazards", Professor Farrokh Nadim, International Centre for Geohazards, Oslo, Norway; Dr. Rudolf Pöttler, Managing Director, ILF - Consulting Engineers, Innsbruck, Austria; Professor Herbert Einstein, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA; Professor Herbert Klapperich, TU Bergakademie Freiberg, Institut für Geotechnik, Freiberg, Germany; Professor Steven Kramer, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington, USA Eds, ECI Symposium Series, (2006). http://dc.engconfintl.org/geohazards/39