maharashtra-news

Mumbai fire officer helped prevent another naval disaster

By Quaid Najmi, Mumbai, Aug 14 : The alertness and presence of mind shown by a top Mumbai Fire Brigade officer probably helped avert a second major disaster in the naval dockyard where the INS Sindhurakshak submarine sank after being rocked by an explosion followed by a fire here Wednesday.


The blast was heard ashore by Deputy Chief Fire Officer P.S. Rahandale who was on leave and attending a private engagement near the Gateway of India promenade.

He immediately alerted his superiors as well as the Fire Brigade and other emergency services to rush to the scene of the tragedy and immediately render assistance.

"When I heard the huge explosion on the promenade, I realized that this was something major and I started for the disaster site. When I reached there, the scene was one of utter devastation," Rahandale told IANS at 3 a.m. Wednesday.

Tall flames were leaping from the newly refurbished and armed INS Sindhurakshak, making it difficult for the rescue teams to even venture close to the spot to render assistance and battle the conflagration, he said.

At that time, he noticed another submarine berthed barely five-six metres away from INS Sindhurakshak which was breathing fire in all directions.

Realising the danger from the leaping flames, Rahandale alerted his fire-figthers and those from the Indian Navy and Mumbai Port Trust to make attempts and save the neighbouring submarine.

"From the fire tenders, we built a wall of water-jets between INS Sindhurakshak and the other vessel nearby, thereby giving a safe window to sail it to a safe distance," Rahandale said.

Though the fire on INS Sindhurakshak was brought under control and prevented from spreading or damaging other naval fixed and floating assets in the vicinity, the vessel sank in the shallow waters around dawn Wednesday.

There are concerns about at least 18 sailors who were aboard the vessel.

A team of Indian Navy divers has been deployed since morning in an effort to rescue some of their colleagues feared trapped inside the sunk vessel.

Chief of Naval Staff Admiral D.K. Joshi will take stock of the situation even as a Board of Inquiry has been ordered into the incident.

Shortly after midnight, a huge explosion accompanied by a fire rocked INS Sindhurakshak which was docked in the high security Naval dockyard early Wednesday.

Many sailors on board the submarine reportedly jumped off to safety.

The cause of the explosion and blaze, as well as the extent of damage to the submarine and naval properties, is still not known.

(Quaid Najmi can be contacted at q.najmi@ians.in)

--IANS (Posted on 14-08-2013)

maharashtra-news headlines

India's first double-decker flyover opens in Mumbai

Parties gear up for Maharasthra's last phase polls

Maharashtra records 61.80 percent voting

KASHISH 2014 to screen foreign films on transgender issues

Around 40 percent vote in Maharashtra

Defective EVMs 'transfer' all votes to Congress in Maharashtra

Cong only party that can stop RSS from grabbing power: Takare

Accused who jumped parole arrested in Mumbai

Serial child molester remanded to police custody

BJP fields Modi look alike for election campaign

Sena retains Palghar civic body

Have faith in people: Sule after casting vote

Quick Links: Goa | Munnar | Pondicherry | Free Yearly Horoscope '2014

Comments

Your e-mail:


Your Full Name:


Type verification image:
verification image, type it in the box

Message:

Back to Top