Kochi-Messina collaboration leads to pilot flood management warning system in the city of Kochi

Categorized as Ecological Transition. Green Deal, News from Asia & Australasia, News from IURC

As part of the IURC Programme, five water level sensors were installed in Kochi, India from November 13-16, 2023, in cooperation with Kochi Municipal Corporation, Centre for Heritage, Environment and Development (C-HED), Kochi, City of Messina and University of Messina. The water level sensors were developed by the University of Messina and were deployed in the city of Kochi by Dr Antonino Galletta, Assistant Professor at the University. These sensors were installed in KSRTC Bus Stand, Panampilly Nagar, Kala Bhavan Road, Ambedkar Nagar and Vivekananda Road.  

The water sensor is an IoT device which helps monitor water level with a sampling frequency of 30 seconds. The sensor can also operate using a solar panel where electricity is unavailable. The data collected is transmitted to a user-friendly dashboard with live monitoring of the water levels.  When the water levels exceed the user defined threshold, automatic notifications are sent out from the system to Kochi Municipal Corporation and also using “Telegram” application to all the recipients who have registered for the alerts. While the dashboard is currently being viewed at C-HED, it will be integrated with Kochi’s Integrated Command and Control Centre and Urban Observatory.

User friendly dashboard to monitor water levels

On 16th November, 2023, all five water level sensors were installed and the Honourable Mayor of Kochi Municipal Corporation, Adv. M Anilkumar personally visited the sensor at KSRTC Bus Stand. On the same day, a workshop on water level sensors and monitoring was held at the Kochi Municipal Corporation Council Hall under the chairmanship of the Honourable Mayor. The workshop was attended by key city government officials including Ms. K A Ansiya, Deputy Mayor, Ms Sunitha Dixon, Chairperson, Works Standing Committee, Adv. Antony Kureethara, Councillor, Mr Shibu V P, Secretary in charge, Mr. Bijoy K N, Superintending Engineer, Dr. Rajan Chedambath, Director, C-HED and Dr Panagiotis Karamanos, Country Coordinator of the IURC Programme in India.

In the days after the installation of the water sensors, Kochi has been receiving heavy rains. Alerts were being received as expected. As a result, the engineers in Kochi Municipal Corporation were able to closely monitor conditions on the ground and activate pumps where necessary. This user-friendly system increases the efficiency and effectiveness of the city during flooding.

News Coverage in regional newspapers and TV channels: