KOCHI: The residents of Kochi woke up to a smoky morning on Saturday as a thick cover of smoke enveloped the areas surrounding the Brahmapuram waste treatment plant on the outskirts of Ernakulam where a major fire broke out on Friday.
The smoke spreading to other parts of the city was a clear warning on the pitfalls of mounting waste heaps dumped in the areas without proper processing.
Many persons living in the neighbourhood and even far-flung areas complained of nausea, breathlessness, foul smell and irritation in eyes.
Residents in areas like MG road, Vyttila, Maradu and Panampilly Nagar in Kochi experienced health issues since early morning hours.
"When we woke up, we felt a foul smell inside our apartment. We could see clouds of smoke all around the area till 9.30 a.m," said Gopinathan, a resident of Vyttila.
A few residents and shopkeepers at Panampilly Nagar suffered irritation in the eyes due to thick smoke. "There are a few asthma patients who suffered much due to the smoke and foul smell. Besides, people who go for morning walks suffered nausea," a resident said.
The district collector has advised the residents near the Brahmapuram plant not to operate air-conditioners as it can cause serious health issues.The health department has also taken steps to ease the issue. "Special medical teams, including two mobile health squads, have been deployed at Brahmapuram.
Besides, a team from Nettoor Social Health Centre visited Kundannoor and Maradu areas where smoke seriously affected the residents," N.K. Kuttappan, district medical officer, Ernakulam, told DC.
A special medical team with ambulance has been deployed at Vyttila Hub and Brahmapuram plant premises for the next three days for meeting any urgent medical needs.
State Monitoring Committee chairman Justice (rtd) A.V. Ramakrishnapillai visited the Brahmapuram plant on Saturday. According to Mr.Pillai, a report will be submitted before the National Green Tribunal (NGT) regarding the fire incident....