Drawings | Local designs

WASH FIELD NOTEDevelopment of a Disaster-ResilientToilet: lessons from the States ofAssam and Gujarat, India

Author: Shyam Dave

Year: 2020

Publisher: UNICEF

This Field Note describes the development process of designing a Disaster-Resilient Toilet (DRT) which
was carried out in the States of Assam and Gujarat in India. Both of these States are affected annually by
flooding and cyclones, and they are also both located in earthquake-prone areas. The impact of flooding
and cyclones has meant that existing toilets are damaged, often beyond repair, as the design of these
toilets does not take into account the specific features needed for them to be disaster resistant. To ensure
that the efforts in rolling-out the Swachh Bharat Mission (which aims at a 100% ODF status in India) are
not undermined by continuous backsliding due to the impact of floods and cyclones, the states of Assam
and Gujarat with the support of REDR India and UNICEF have developed a new design for DRTs that
can withstand these annual environmental disasters. This Field Note outlines the challenges faced with
the currently used toilet designs during disasters and the process for developing the design of the DRTs.
Furthermore, this Field Note will present i) the DRT design recommendations, ii) the lessons learnt from
the training on DRT construction, and iii) the next steps for the DRT implementation based on
recommendations made by participants of the DRT training and the Conference on Sanitation in Assam

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