THIS is with reference to a news item (Sept 4 ) according to which six men, including four sanitary workers of the TMA, Jhang, were killed after inhaling poisonous gas while trying to repair out-of-order electric motors in a sewage disposal station well at Satellite Town, Jhang.
Reportedly, these casualties occurred because the workers entered the disposal station without safety gear. Similar fatal incidents leading to deaths have already been reported frequently. Recently, ago two sanitary workers and the one who tried to rescue them were killed by toxic gas while working inside a choked sewage manhole in Lahore.
Frequent deaths of low-paid sanitary workers in such a pathetic way, however, have failed to evoke any preventive measures by the TMA/LG authorities so far.
Had the sanitary workers been provided with safety gear such as gas/oxygen masks as well as on the spot medical first aid, the tragedies could have been averted.
The municipal authorities concerned should take immediate notice of the unfortunate but preventable deaths of hapless poor sanitary workers and arrange to procure and provide proper safety gear to its workers who have to enter sewage manhole and disposal station wells as part of their duty for clean-up or repair work.
Simply, a small amount of fund and extra care is needed to save precious human lives of those workers who do that ‘dirty’ job to save us from filth and squalor.
ABAIDUR REHMAN Faisalabad