Every monsoon our news channels feature at least one city drowning in its own urban cesspit. This year it was Bengaluru where billionaires found out that money cannot insulate them from nature’s fury or inept urban planning. It is no wonder that the livability index has taken a beating in our leading cities, but gated communities have by and large managed to buck this reality. So what went wrong in Bengaluru and are there lessons to be learned?
The problem in this case lies in unplanned and unchecked urban development. For gated communities, this disaster was another lesson staying prepared for any challenge through disaster planning and preparedness. Villas and condos in low-lying areas have to invest in extensive drainage networks, full gutter systems, and sump pumps. Together, these measures can help in reducing hydrostatic pressure, direct excess water, and bring down the likelihood of flooding.
While these infrastructural measures are critical, we must think beyond and plan for every eventuality. The pandemic has shown us that a disaster can strike at any time and in any form. These calamities can pose a serious threat to the high livability standards that many gated communities have managed to deliver within their premises. It jeopardises the health and safety of residents and strains resources.
With its full-stack technology solutions in apartment management, ApnaComplex can play a critical role in mitigating these impacts. It offers multiple tools to support disaster management. These are designed specifically to help MCs create a more accessible and efficient system for managing calamities. As an integrated platform, it can play a critical role in establishing, executing and tracking disaster management initiatives.
Importance of Disaster Preparedness
Data shows that the number of disasters have increased by fivefold over the last 50 years. Natural calamities like floods and hurricanes have increased in frequency, creating damage to both private and shared areas in a housing complex. At the same time, the spread of a disease or epidemic has created new healthcare challenges.
Disasters rarely come with any warning, creating an emergency where resources are put under strain to manage resources. MCs have to allocate manpower judiciously to contain or mitigate the impact while moving quickly to address resident queries. If unaddressed, these calamities can cause millions in damages, cause anger or dissatisfaction, and strain the limited resources of a housing complex.
A 2021 study of residential-cum-commercial property in Mumbai demonstrated that proper planning can mitigate losses due to disasters. However, to be effective, a good plan must include detailed execution, operation, and maintenance systems. ApnaComplex enables this execution, creating a broadcasting system while strengthening it at the back end through its operational modules.
ApnaComplex Tools for Disaster Management
As a comprehensive apartment management software, ApnaComplex is a highly effective platform that can help the MC in disaster preparedness and management.
The first step in disaster management is ensuring timely communication. Residents must be made aware of impending disasters. They must be informed of the steps to take in an emergency. The ApnaComplex Notice Board under the Communication module can be leveraged to send multi-channel communication including in-app messages, emails, and SMSs.
Communicating the plan
For any plan to be successful, the residents must be aware of its guidelines. They must be made aware of the steps to take when a calamity strikes. ApnaComplex Community Wiki is an information repository where important data can be uploaded and shared. With role-based access, the Wiki can also be used to upload the plan of action that should be followed by the MC and admin staff.
In case of an emergency, a quick communication can be issued to direct residents to this repository. Apart from guidelines, this platform is also valuable in maintaining a contact directory. This can include contact details of the crisis team, emergency services, exit plans, and diagrams.
Maintaining emergency equipment is critical for quick response when a catastrophe strikes. Routine maintenance checks should be carried out on smoke and fire detectors as well as equipment like fire extinguishers and sump pumps. ApnaComplex has comprehensive modules for recording service history and AMC details. You can also add a maintenance schedule with reminder notifications.
Similarly, the Inventory Tracker can be set up to track purchases and ensure stock levels of all items that may be required during a crisis. Together these measures ensure that the community is equipped and empowered to face a crisis.
Case Study: ApnaComplex COVID Response
When the pandemic struck in 2020, many housing societies found themselves scrambling to accommodate a new reality where lockdown measures had to be imposed. There were many other considerations, such as limiting the number of visitors. The digital solutions offered by ApnaComplex helped in establishing and strengthening a smooth contactless management system. At the same time, there were further enhancements to monitor and track COVID cases. Together these COVID measures included:
- Contactless visitor management
- Quarantine tracker to keep track of families that were under isolation
- No-contact accounting
- In-app communication
- Online polls and surveys to gather consensus for new COVID policies
- Vaccination Tracker to keep track of vaccinated staff and members
You can learn more about ApnaComplex COVID management in our article here. If you want to know about our disaster management tools, call us at +91 80886 11229 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our team will get in touch with you at the earliest.