After the Odisha train tragedy, NDRF employees were traumatised by “seeing blood every time.”

After the Odisha train tragedy, NDRF employees were traumatized by “seeing blood every time.” In the collision that resulted in 288 fatalities and close to 1,000 injuries, as many as nine NDRF teams were sent out to conduct rescue efforts. As a result of what they witnessed at the scene of the accident, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) teams working on the rescue effort in the triple train crash in Odisha’s Balasore district were traumatized, experiencing hallucinations, and even losing their appetite. This was one of the worst railway accidents in the country in the previous thirty years.

Atul Karwal, director general of the NDRF, shared the plight of the rescuers and the effects of the incident on their mental health. He talked about how one of the rescuers had a blood-spotting hallucination and another had lost his appetite after witnessing multiple deaths and victims in excruciating pain.


“I just visited the rescuers working the Balasore train accident rescue operation… Someone once claimed to have had the hallucination of seeing blood whenever he saw water. After this rescue effort, a different member of staff claimed to have lost the will to eat, according to Karwal, as reported by the news agency.

In the incident that resulted in 288 fatalities and over 1,000 injuries, as many as nine NDRF teams were sent out to conduct rescue efforts. According to the official data, the specialized force saved 44 lives and removed 121 dead from the scene.

Tuesday’s ‘Annual Conference on Capacity Building for Disaster Response-2023‘ was held at Vigyan Bhawan in New Delhi, and Karwal gave the opening remarks.
The director also discussed the steps that are done to protect the rescuers’ mental health after such catastrophes.
“The teams must be in good physical and mental shape…As a result, numerous programmes focusing on both mental and physical health are run for this reason. Counselling sessions are held to ensure the rescuers’ mental wellbeing, he said.

Karwal further noted that similar initiatives were carried out following the rescue workers’ exit from the mission in the wake of the terrible earthquake that struck Turkey in February.
Rather than using their services on a temporary basis, the NDRF was also in the process of adding a permanent counsellor to its ranks.
The Bengaluru-Howrah Superfast Express, Shalimar-Chennai Central Coromandel Express, and a goods train were all involved in the Balasore train accident, which resulted in the derailment and damage of up to 21 coaches and the entrapment of hundreds of passengers.

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