Kochi: The Cochin International Airport Limited (CIAL) has sought the Dutch assistance to ward off floods at the airport.
“They have expertise in tackling heavy floods, and a team of experts will be here next week," an official said. "A master plan will be prepared to make sure that we are insulated in a reasonable way against floods.”
Last month's devastating floods had forced the airport to shut for a fortnight, causing an estimated loss of Rs 300 crore.
The official said that already KITCO in association with the irrigation department is undertaking a survey cum study to assess the reasons and possible measures. “The Dutch experts will join them, and we hope to put in place a mechanism against floods," he said.
“At present, we find the floods of recent magnitude very tough to tackle. The team will finalise their preliminary report by October 15.”
He said local self-government bodies that had also witnessed massive flooding would also be part of this process.
“Though we shut down for two days in 2013 when the Idamalayar dam was opened, we averted a shutdown this time when it opened. The construction of the diversion canal from Chengalthodu after 2013 enabled us to do it," he said.
"But our problem at hand is battling a situation when Idukki and Idamalayar dams are both open at the same time. This coupled with heavy rain at the airport area aggravated the situation.”
“Now we are mooting the idea of constructing a regulator-cum-bridge at the mouth of Chengalthodu, which branches out from Periyar, the flooding of which causes inundation of the airport. But this RCB is not a big-time solution. Deepening of the diversion canal and other adjoining canals is also necessary. We are looking at the experts too for solutions,” he added....