We expect the monsoons to arrive in most parts of the country shortly. Listed below are some HSSE tips for you and your loved ones to ensure that everyone continues to remain safe during the monsoon season.
- Carry out a thorough pre-monsoon check for your vehicle, including batteries, tyres, electrical wiring, engine fluids and wipers.
- Keep the windshield wiper fluid bottle full.
- Pre-plan your journey; keep an umbrella, a rain coat, first aid kit, adequate quantity of drinking water, some dry eating stuff and emergency contact numbers in your vehicle.
- Keep a torch and a hammer/spanner inside the car to break the glass in case you are trapped in the car.
- Gather information about adverse weather conditions, potential flooding spots and alternate routes well in advance.
- Be mentally prepared to deal with emergencies and have contingency plan in place.
- While driving reduce speed, moderate acceleration, moderate braking action and do not take quick turns to avoid skidding.
- Keep adequate safe driving distance from the vehicle ahead. The distance should ideally be double during the monsoon season compared to the normal season.
- Turn on your headlights during a heavy shower or in gloomy, foggy or overcast conditions. Not only does this help you see the road, but also helps other drivers see you. Drive in the tracks of a vehicle ahead of you. Watch out for brake lights in front of you.
- Watch out for oily deposits on roads and move at very low speed.
- If the exhaust is under water, rev the engine and slip the clutch to change gears and move. The fast moving exhaust gases will prevent water from entering the tail pipe.
- In case you need to traverse deep water, pump the brakes to dry them out after crossing thereby enhancing their efficiency.
- To overcome front end skids, release the brake and let the front wheels roll freely to regain traction and steering control.
- For rear end skids, take the foot off the accelerator and turn wheels in the direction that the rear of the vehicle is skidding, and pump brakes lightly.
- Remember, at any time, your life is more precious than your vehicle. If stranded in a vehicle, leave the vehicle and move to an elevated place and ask for help. Do not walk through flowing water before you are sure about the firmness of the ground. Be mindful of slip, trip & fall hazards (slippery surfaces, open manholes). Use right kind of footwear with good anti-skid sole.
Electrical safety at home:
- Get the wiring at your premises tested for its robustness and proper earthing by a licensed electrical contractor to avoid any possibility of loose contacts and short circuits.
- Ensure protection of your electrical installations from rain water/water seepage at your premises during monsoon.
- Make sure there is no water leakage near power sockets.
- Switch off your window air conditioners from the main switch and not just by using a remote. This will avoid the potential danger of electric shock caused by the leaking current. A wet grill could facilitate passage of electric current.
- Use only three-pin plugs/sockets that are in good condition. Earth-pin provides a path for the leaking current, thus prevents electric shock.
- Lightning and thunder are risks for electrical appliances in use. A lightning strike nearby can set off a powerful electrical surge that can severely damage appliances plugged in at that time. It is advisable to turn off the appliances immediately in the event of lightning.
- Intermittent flickering may be a sign of developing cable fault in the system. If flickering is observed immediately switch off the mains and report to your electrical service provider.
- Ensure your kids do not touch the electric poles and open wires while playing in open.
- Do not tie your pets to electric towers/ poles.
- Do not touch any electrical installation in or near the meter cabin. Call a certified electrician.
Although monsoon brings down the temperatures, it also creates a fertile breeding ground for some diseases like Viral fever, Malaria, Cholera, Dengue, Chikungunya, Conjunctivitis, Typhoid, Hepatitis, Leptospirosis and Food Poisoning. All these diseases usually have one or more symptoms - fever with or without chills/rigors, body ache, headache, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, rash and redness of eyes. Emphasis being on prevention, the following guidelines will help:
- Avoid getting wet in rain and if wet, do change clothes immediately.
- Avoid wetting your feet with monsoon water as it may be contaminated with animal excreta – a cause of Leptospirosis.
- Take following insect-bite prevention measures:
- Wear full-sleeve shirt, loose-fitting clothing, trousers and socks.
- Make sure the windows are closed.
- Ensure to have insect screens on the windows.
- Use plug-in vaporizers, knock-down insecticide sprays, mosquito nets, mosquito repellents like DEET & Lemon eucalyptus.
- Purchase food/water from reputed stores and of reputed brands.
- Avoid street food. Consume foods in reputed and hygienic hotels/restaurants only.
- Safe distancing: avoid close contact with people having symptoms listed above.
- Maintain high personal hygiene: frequently wash your hands using soap and water or use a sanitizer.
- Avoid crowded public places.
- If you have symptoms enumerated above, it is strongly recommended that you seek professional medical attention at the earliest. Do not self-medicate.
Hope you find these tips useful as you get ready to welcome the rains this year.