The monsoon season brought the worst rainfall Chennai, India had seen in more than 100 years, which resulted in heavy flooding in December 2015. The resulting floods immobilized the city and its residents and devastated the city’s infrastructure. Roads were largely impassable, and many were completely washed away by the rising water. Commercial air was completely disabled, and Chennai Airport was closed with no estimated time frame to resume operations.
WorldAware’s insurance partner had three people located in the city who were stranded by the flooding. The people had no means to relocate on their own and were also low on food and clean water with no way to replenish supplies. In addition to the flooded infrastructure, additional considerations needed to be made for the unsanitary conditions which increased the risk of disease as a result of the environment. WorldAware’s partner requested that WorldAware evacuate the people and help them return home safely.
WorldAware in Action
WorldAware formed an Incident Management Team (IMT) to handle the operation and assigned a dedicated Incident Manager (IM) to serve as the designated point of contact throughout the operation. Once activated, the IM immediately began to assess the situation. The first step was to make initial contact with the evacuees and determine their exact location. The IMT established the exact location of the three individuals, confirmed that they were safe and well, and set up a communication and safety check-in protocol to communicate with them via mobile phone and email at regular intervals. The IM then analyzed the risk profile of the environment including where the personnel were located and specific challenges of the area. Using the overall risk profile, the IM designed an appropriate security plan and coordinated security partners and other team members to dedicate resources according to the plan’s needs.
Since roads were impassable and the Chennai airport was closed, WorldAware had to evaluate other alternatives for transportation. Evacuating the individuals by boat was the safest and most reliable option with other standard methods disabled. WorldAware coordinated with its partners in Chennai to safely retrieve each of the three individuals and move them by boat, and then vehicle to Bangalore, India. Secure hotel arrangements were made for the individuals and their security detail in Bangalore. From Bangalore, the three individuals were able to fly via commercial means to Kempegowda International Airport where they boarded their flights home. WorldAware’s IMT handled all the arrangements for transport including the hotel and commercial flights home for the individuals.
The evacuation used WorldAware’s signature model of Rapid Response Planning Process (R2P2). By using a standard, repeatable process, WorldAware was able to move three people safely to safe-haven hotels out of the impact zone and make necessary commercial flight arrangements out of Bengaluru International Airport to their final home destination.
Members of the IMT delivered a successful outcome by providing project oversight, ensuring seamless communication, and coordinating all activities throughout the operation. By being flexible in their approach, WorldAware ensured that the people made it out safely, but still used commercial means when possible to minimize the associated costs to our insurance partner. All the people in WorldAware’s care returned home safely.
WorldAware provides intelligence-driven, integrated risk management solutions that enable multinational organizations to operate globally with confidence. WorldAware’s end-to-end tailored solutions, integrated world-class threat intelligence, innovative technology, and response services help organizations mitigate risk and protect their people, assets, and reputations.
 WorldAware’s Rapid Response Planning Process is how we plan and coordinate for sudden impact events to ensure the safe, efficient, and effective rapid deployment of resources.