Published on: December 21, 2023

Pallium India was invited by Emirates Airlines for a table top discussion on ‘NGOs in Aircraft Disasters: A life line of hope’ to discuss the vital role of NGOs during an aircraft disaster, in view of their past experience of their flight crash in 2016 and 2020 Air India crash in Calicut, where the NGOs and local people played a greater role while the airport rescue team was incapacitated due high inflow. NGOs are a valuable resource with dedicated personals who can act effectively and efficiently in time of an emergency.

The aim of the program was to put up a proposal to the Airports Authority of India – an emergency rescue plan with roles designated to NGOs to support, secure security clearance. This session was the initial step to identify the services that can be offered by the NGOs and present it before the Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF).

Pallium India was represented by Dr Arjun Devarajan, Senior Palliative care physician and Section Head of Medical Services. Our presentation was much appreciated and was followed by several queries from the audience.

At the conclusion of the session, the ARFF team agreed to put up the proposal, and follow up with MOUs with the NGOs and organise mock drills, once clearance was obtained.

The attendees included Emirates airline staff lead by Mr. P K Aju (Head of operations), Airports Authority of India staff, Mr. Manu Jacob (Manager, Airport Rescue and Firefighting), Mr. Sajeev Kumar (Fire chief), Airport operators committee (consisting of representatives from various airlines).

In addition to Pallium India, the NGOs that attended were NCC, Signature of  Nishagandhi, Change Can Change Climate Change Foundation, Radio Amateur Society of Ananthapuri, TRACK, District emergency network of Kollam, Disaster emergency response of Kollam.

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