Kerala Fishermen in action to support rescue teams

Responding to a request of the district-level Disaster Management Authority, fishing boat owners from Beypore and Puthiyappa have kept over 100 boats ready for emergency rescue operations in Kozhikode district.

The boats, anchored at the Beypore harbour, will be rushed to the locations on directives of the District Collector.

Leaders of the All Kerala Boat Operators Association said the service would be offered free of charge and more than five boats had been sent to flooded locations in the district.

They said there was no shortage of fishers or boats as no fishing activity was going on off the Beypore coast following the adverse weather conditions.

Ready to help

“The Beypore police contacted us seeking support for the rescue operations. We were asked to prepare as many boats as possible. We have arranged it on time,” said Karichal Preman, vice president of the association. He said some of the experienced fishermen had already come forward to support the rescue operations using their boats.

Mr. Preman said the fishermen came up with the supportive stance even as they were facing acute crisis in business and damage caused by rough sea to their boats. “If needed, we will be able to arrange more boats with the support of fishermen from other harbours,” he said.

Irfan Habeeb, a fisherman from Vellayil, said his team could help out about 40 families trapped in waterlogged houses at Ramanattukara. “We used two boats for rescuing them. There were six fishermen to coordinate rescue work in the area,” he said.

Mr. Habeeb said the disaster management authority was in need of smaller boats for rescue operations. “Many of us have bigger boats, which cannot be used in our regions. We are making efforts to arrange smaller ones,” he said.

Fisheries officials said they too had sought the support of fishers to meet emergency situations. “Since almost all fishing boats are ashore, we have no confusion over their willingness to lend a hand to the district administration,” they said.

Fisheries Assistant Director P.K. Ranjini said there were no major incidents of sea erosion along the coast.

News Source – The Hindu.