Disaster management approaches for libraries in India

Table of contents



The present paper highlights the catastrophe and its direction in general and in libraries in electronic age. The paper besides suggested the direction methods of catastrophe in libraries. Libraries are the keeper of our history, civilization and civilisation. They are maintaining the heritage of the state in safe for last 1000s of old ages. The precaution against catastrophe for the libraries is really of import. Safeguard should be in such planned ways that save the resources of library without any harm. In India libraries are non concentrating on catastrophe direction due to unawareness and dearth of financess. Libraries and reputed Information Centres should organize plan on catastrophe direction in libraries. There should be developing and workshop plan for library forces every bit good as for library users. Library and pull offing authorization should do necessary agreement for the effectual plan of catastrophe direction in libraries. Disaster direction plan should be implemented from the initial phase ( from the building of edifice for any administration ) .

Key-Words: Catastrophe, Disaster Management, Natural Disaster, Man-Made Disaster,

Disaster Management – Libraries, Artificial Disaster


Now libraries of India transforming themselves from traditional library to modern library or we may state automated, electronic, digital, practical or intercrossed libraries. With the development of engineering alterations, the development of hardship besides increased. Adversity or catastrophe may be natural an artificial besides. Disaster and its direction ( Disaster Management ) now becomes the firing subject in many field due to natural catastrophe as cyclone, twister, temblor, fire due to heavy rain, H2O inundation etc. and unreal catastrophe as power grid failure, web failure, fire, waiter fail, short -circuit etc. In libraries, governments and libraries are non giving their attending for direction of any sort of catastrophe. In India except some progress libraries, most of libraries have no prearrangement for catastrophe. Libraries have our history. Civilization and civilization in books and in electronic signifier, if any catastrophe occurred they will lose valuable history, Civilization and civilization.


Catastrophe is an unexpected, black go oning transporting inordinate mutilation, harm, and devastation and desolation to life and belongings. The mutilation caused by catastrophes is incalculable and differs with the topographical location, clime and the type of the Earth surface/degree of susceptibleness. These effects may be mental, socio-economic, political and cultural province of the affected country. Catastrophe may be work forces made ( Artificial ) and natural. Some definition of catastrophe as follow:

An happening doing widespread devastation and hurt ; a catastrophe.” Emergency “A serious state of affairs or happening that happens out of the blue and demands immediate action [ 1 ] .” ( American Heritage Dictionary. 3 rd. ed. , 1996 )

In modern-day academe, catastrophes are seen as the consequence of jeopardies on vulnerable countries. Hazards that occur in countries with low exposure do non ensue in a catastrophe ; as is the instance in uninhabited parts. ( Quarantelli 1998 ) [ 2 ] .

Acatastrophe is a natural or semisynthetic ( or technological ) jeopardy ensuing in an event of significant extent doing important physical harm or devastation, loss of life, or drastic alteration to the environment. A catastrophe can be extensively defined as any tragic event stemming from events such as temblors, inundations, ruinous accidents, fires, or detonations. It is a phenomenon that can do harm to life and belongings and destruct the economic, societal and cultural life of people. [ 3 ]

 Natural Catastrophe

A natural catastrophe is an deduction when a natural danger touches creatures and/or the built atmosphere. The resulting harm is governed by on the capacity of the population to back up or contend the catastrophe: their resiliency. This apprehension is concentrated in the preparation: “ catastrophes occur when jeopardies meet defencelessness ” . A natural danger will hereafter ne’er consequence in a natural catastrophe in countries without exposure. Numerous uniquenesss like, landslides, temblors, eruptions, volcanic, cyclones and inundations are all natural jeopardies that kill 1000s of people and destroy moneys of district and goods every clip. Followings are the chief natural catastrophes:

Volcanic eruptions
Biological agents ( micro-organisms, insect or vermin infestation )
Fires ( wildfires )

Artificial ( Men Made ) Catastrophe

With the technological development the jeopardies besides grows. Artificial catastrophes besides can be caused by worlds. Dangerous stuffs exigencies include chemical tumbles and groundwater pollution. Workplace fires ( caused by short-circuit etc. ) are more common and can arise significant belongings mutilation and loss of life. Communities are besides defenseless to these menaces posed by overzealous groups who use fierceness against both people and belongings.

In Artificial catastrophe, marks may include military and civilian authorities installations, international airdromes, high-profile landmarks and big metropoliss. In Cyber-terrorism involves onslaughts against computing machines ( server down, virus onslaught, choping and unauthorized entree etc. ) and networks done to intimidate or coerce a authorities or its people for political or societal aims.

Disaster direction

It is a subject that includes devising, armed robbery, and reconstructing society when natural or human-made catastrophes occur. In general, any Crisis direction is the ageless procedure by which all persons, groups, and communities manage jeopardies in an attempt to avoid or hone the impact of catastrophes ensuing from the jeopardies

‘Disaster direction can be defined as the organisation and direction of resources and duties for covering with all human-centered facets of exigencies, in peculiar readiness, response and recovery in order to decrease the impact of catastrophes.

 Catastrophe in Libraries

Catastrophe either natural or manmade may happen in any administration and at any topographic point of the universe. Its earnestness may be distinguished on preventative, pre-arrangement and other security methods. Now, libraries have entered in the age of electronic age but with the coming of engineering in libraries, the technological ( Artificial ) catastrophe has besides generated. Natural catastrophe like implosion therapy, temblor, cyclones, rain and Volcanic eruptions etc. are indistinguishable and non changed but traveling toward uncertainness due to planetary heating. Day to twenty-four hours semisynthetic catastrophe as power cuts, web failure, cooling- warming, larceny of books, web tower failure, struggle, noise, and force may happen in libraries. Besides these, fire, sever failure, crashing of computing machine besides are major catastrophe in libraries. Sometimes some misshaping may change over in major catastrophe in libraries.

Disaster Management in Libraries:

Libraries are our guardian or custodian of our history, civilization and civilisation. They are maintaining these records in printed and non-printed papers. Students, scholar outlook are besides linked with libraries. So maintenance and security of libraries are indispensable from catastrophe etc.

In this concern Indian libraries ( particularly authorities and public libraries ) frustrated us. Libraries are non so secured in this concern. Most of the libraries have non installed fire dismay system in their libraries. If installed, the care of these systems is zero, merely they became show peace. Libraries are besides faces many twenty-four hours to twenty-four hours catastrophe like power-cuts ( No holding generators ) , no heating-cooling system etc. Libraries are information Centre are besides organizing many workshop, conference and seminar of ICT but neglected the subject like catastrophe direction in libraries [ 5 ] . This is doomed of Libraries as they are supplying reading stuff ( books, diaries and encyclopaedias etc. ) on catastrophe direction to their users for research but for them, there is no such ageless plan in this concern. Fundss are besides a barrier in this concern as libraries non acquiring equal financess for purchase books etc. and these catastrophes are the secondary stage for the libraries. I personally observed in many libraries that there was no such preventative equipment and measuring for this catastrophe ( natural and semisynthetic ) . Catastrophe commanding program is a must be assimilated in preliminary planning of establishing a library and information Centre. Numerous minor arrows for a complete catastrophe direction program, which are independent of each other but are interwoven. Libraries either academic or public and authorization ( Government- Non-Government ) should do the undermentioned proviso in their libraries against catastrophe direction:

Fruitful Plan: Each catastrophe has three stages: earlier, during and after. A variableness of programs is required to pull off with each of these stages. There should be fruitful program for catastrophe direction. Catastrophe program must cover complete of the library and information Centre including staff, readers, beginnings of information, equipment and substructure and it must be a concerted squad attempt.

Mirror Server/ Backup:There should be agreement of mirror waiter and day-to-day backup of work should be taken on regular base by the competent library staff. Data backup should non maintain in library and be placed at minimal two topographic points. A responsible staff may take this backup with them. AMC of library waiter and UPC may be an alternate security step for this.

Power Supply:There should be one chief switch of light system of library and topographic point to put MCV- Light accountant should be installed in the library to avoid short-circuit in light system.

Duty:There should be arrested development of duties on staff and suited should be identified and sequence should be fixed in written and verbally. Suitable senior and junior staff should be incorporated in catastrophe planning.

Power-Cuts: There should be installing of Solar Power System and UPS to provide the the uninterrupted power supply. Sound proof power generator may be installed for this system.

Fire:Fire dismay system and fume sensor should be installed in library on each degree so that any type of fume and fire is detected. The staff preparation is indispensable to manage such system and should openings for staff to be qui vive of what is expected of them in the event of catastrophe. Library should placing imperative parts of the edifice, aggregations, apportioning deliverance primacies, acknowledging utility storage sites, supplying satisfactory fire protection.

Extra Fundss Agreement: There should be an extra fund agreement to secure the preventative equipment and for doing such catastrophe agreement in libraries.

Rain- Floods: It is impartial as of import to find where the H2O is coming from and should to halt it at its cause as it is to cover up the books. There should be agreement of H2O security out system around the library. The entree of H2O should travel in direct to toss off to earth.

User Awareness Program: There should be a user consciousness plan sing the catastrophe direction. This plan may be included in user education/ orientation plan of the library.

Workshop/Training and Conference: Time to clip library and information centres should form preparation and workshop plan on catastrophe direction in libraries.

Disaster Management Agency:Library and information centres may engage Disaster Management Agency for catastrophe direction. Library may contract with such type of bureau ( Government and Private ) . There are many such types of bureaus are available ( on-line – offline ) for catastrophe direction.


Now the scope of catastrophe has increased, natural catastrophe is increasing due to planetary heating and unreal catastrophes ( man-made ) are increasing with the coming of Information Communication Technology. Pre-planning for catastrophe is really of import as this direction is inter-linked on each other. These planning should be implemented from the initial stage ( from the point of building of edifice of any administration like libraries ) . Time to clip mock drill should besides implement for proving of the plan. Care of such process is besides really of import. Government, non-government and pull offing governments should besides pay more attending on this issue. Government should besides do such positive policies for libraries and information sing the execution of catastrophe direction.


Aparac-Gazivoda, T. and Katalenac, D. ( 1993 ) Wounded libraries in Croatia, Zagreb: Croatian Library Association. Archives, Aldershot: Ashgate.
Featherstone, Robin M. , Lyon, Becky J, and Ruffin, Angela B. ( 2008 ) .Librarian’s Role in Disaster Response: an Oral History Project. Journal of Medical Library Association, 96,256-282.doi 10.3163/1536-5050.96.4.009.
Golrick, Michael A. ( 2009 ) . Disaster direction: Stairss in the procedure. Retrieved from: hypertext transfer protocol: //michaelgolrick.blogspot.com/2009/03/disaster-management-plan-steps-in.html.
Saint matthews, G. and Eden, P. ( 1996 ) Disaster direction in British libraries. Project study with guidelines for library directors, London: The British Library.
Saint matthews, Graham, & A ; Eden, Paul. ( 1996 ) “ Disaster direction preparation in libraries ” , Library Review, Vol. 45 Iodine: 1, pp.30 – 38
Riedlmayer, A. ( 2007 ) ‘Crimes of war, offenses of peace: devastation of libraries during and after the Balkan wars of the 1990s’ , Library Trends 1 ( 56 ) , 107-132.


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