Due to a unique green corridor that was set up for relief and rescue operations when the a building in congested Bhendi Bazaar in Mumbai collapsed, the NDRF teams covered the distance in much less time to reach the collapse site. The Maharashtra government had set up a 21-km-long high-speed corridor between Vakola in the suburbs and Bhendi Bazaar in South Mumbai. This was the first time when the ‘green corridor’ that was generally used to speed up transportation of organs for life-saving transplants, was used to ferry rescuers to the site of a disaster, as per the report by the Indian Express. Three teams of NDRF were deployed for the rescue operation in which three people were rescued alive from the debris.
Around 8.55 am, the Mumbai municipality’s disaster management cell got in touch with the NDRF teams stationed at the Andheri Sports Complex to join the rescue efforts. The Mumbai fire brigade was immediately pressed into service as soon as they got the news of the building collapse. As reported by the Indian Express, it was 9.05 am by the time three teams of the NDRF left for the rescue operation from the NDRF base, which was 26 kilometres away from the collapse site but Mumbai’s slow moving South-bound traffic, slowed the pace of the teams. The Deputy Commandant of NDRF, Sachidanand Gawade, recalled the ordeal and said as the teams were stuck in a traffic jam, they contacted the state authorities requesting them to consider setting up a high-speed corridor.
Followed the request, a pilot vehicle of the Mumbai traffic police along with traffic police on bikes, formed an escort around the vehicles of the NDRF team. They made sure that private vehicles ahead made way for the rescuers, and a high-speed corridor could be created. The team reached the spot at 10.30 am. Gawade said had it not been for the traffic police’s green corridor, the team would have taken another one-and-a-half hours to get to the site. The initiative helped in saving three lives.