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Odisha developing app for early warning on lightning

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The Odisha government is planning to develop a smartphone application in order to disseminate early warnings regarding possible lightning strikes in specific areas, an official said on Wednesday.

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Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) Bishnupada Sethi the government will soon sign a memorandum of understanding with US-based Earth Networks lightning analysing system for prior weather warning like lightning and thunderstorm alerts.

Sethi said that users of the application will be able to receive alerts one hour before lightning strikes in a particular area.

Non-smartphone users can receive SMS alerts through this system, the SRC said.

This will facilitate dissemination of early warning through mass massaging and mobile-based application to the people of such localities enabling them to take suitable precautionary measures to save their lives.

Early detection of lightning is feasible and it has been possible in some places. Lightning can be noticed in the cloud 30 to 45 minutes ahead of its ground falling through the application of super censors, said an official.

The aim of early detection of lightning is to reduce death toll due to nature’s fury.

Notably, lightning has become a major natural disaster in Odisha that claims more than 400 human lives on an average per year.

Sethi said 61 people have died from April 1 to May 22 due to lighting in the state.

As many as 456 human lives have been lost during the year 2017-18 due to lightning, which records a 15% increase over that in the last year.

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