Millennium Post

Three workers die while cleaning sewer in Noida

NOIDA: The sewers in Delhi-NCR seem to have turned into wells of death, after three sanitation workers died of asphyxiation while cleaning a sewer line at BDS Market in Sector-110, Noida, on Thursday evening.
The incident comes in the wake of death of as many as 10 sanitation workers in the national Capital in similar circumstances.
Thursday's tragic incident was reported around 4 pm, said Noida Police. The deceased were identified as Rajesh, Vikas and Ravindra, all native of district Gonda in Uttar Pradesh and aged between 25 and 30 years.
According to police, the contractual workers were assigned the job to clean the sewer line in Sector-110.
During the cleaning, with adequate safety equipment, one of the workers slipped into the manhole.
In order to save him, the two others jumped in as well. Locals and other workers alerted police when none of the workers responded after they were called out several times.
"The workers got inside the sewer line at 4 pm. Other members of the team tasked to clean the sewage line present at the spot got suspicious when the three labourers stopped responding to them. They alerted police and a team was rushed to the spot" said Avaneesh Kumar, circle officer, Noida.
"The laborers were rescued from the hole with cranes and rushed to district hospital, where doctors declared them dead after examination.
"The victims were employed by a contractor, who has been absconding after the incident. We are investigating the matter to find out who is responsible," added Kumar.
The workers reportedly died of suffocation and inhalation of toxic fumes.
Meanwhile, Noida Authority Chairman Alok Tandon promised a sum of Rs 10 lakh each to the family of each of the three deceased sanitation workers.
Deaths of ill-equipped sanitation workers have been reported from various states over the past few months.
Poor working conditions and lack of protective gear are the main reasons for endangering the lives of thousands of sanitation workers in the country.
According to experts, before getting into the sewer/manhole, a sanitation worker should be provided with a 'chemical-proof' full body suit, air pipe, gloves, safety belt, helmet and shoes.
The presence and levels of toxic gases must also be checked before workers enter sewers. If any, the gases must be got rid of before the workers enter.
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