UDRRMC organizes disaster-preparedness webinar, conducts earthquake and fire drill

Toni Rose Baldovino, News, Communication Management Office

Following the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID)’s health and safety guidelines on actual evacuation exercise, Polytechnic University of the Philippines University Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (PUP-UDRRMC), in coordination with the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP), conducted a disaster-preparedness webinar, and earthquake and fire drill on December 16.

Earthquake Drill and Response During Emergency and Disaster webinar aired live via Facebook on Wednesday, aligned with the annual system-wide earthquake drill and preparation event to shape stakeholder’s readiness in times of calamities.

PUP Executive Vice President and UDRRMC Chairman, Prof. Alberto Guillo, commenced the program with his message, mentioning the necessity for this preparation to be absorbed in anticipation for future disasters, precisely The Big One.

“So, ito’y paulit-ulit nating ginagawa upang ito ay matanim sa ating kaisipan at maging bahagi na ng ating normal at pang-araw-araw na pag-iisip,” he said.

According to him, this webinar is part of the university’s intensified information, education, and communication campaigns in this time of pandemic.

Its resource speaker, Philip Talay, Director of Risk Reduction Management and Climate Change Adaptation and Management of Central Bicol State University of Agriculture (CBSUA) provided basic knowledge on how to respond to emergency cases related to disasters, focusing on earthquake drill and typhoon.

He discussed Disaster Risk Reduction and Management, for instance, the difference between hazards and disaster. Various terms and concepts were also explained relating to disasters, notably vulnerability, capacity, risk, and elements at risk, the disaster management cycle, National Disaster Risk Reduction Management (NDRRM) Framework, and many more.

In addition, Talay tackled the fundamental principles of Climate Change and the idea of future-proofing—which is a process of anticipating the future and developing methods of minimizing the effects of shocks and stresses of future events.

“Using future thinking, using future-proofing ideas, using our concepts in disaster risk reduction and management, using our concepts in climate change adaptation, so we can now fully understand why we are doing earthquake drills or how should we respond to disasters or to emergencies,” he told the participants.

The CBSUA professor also emphasized the need for rehearsing safety routines and showed the proper conducting of earthquake evacuation drills and typhoon preparations.

Formally concluding the discussion, Dr. Ferdinand La Puebla, Director of Disaster Resilience Center, further stressed the meaning of resiliency: to adapt, manage, and recover when it comes to emergencies, and the importance of being informed when it comes to disasters.

“The question is: are we already ready? Are we already resilient at this point this time? Because resilience to disasters and emergencies saves lives.” he left this question in his remarks. 

Simultaneous with the webinar, PUP Sta. Mesa Marcelo H. Del Pilar Campus conducted an earthquake and fire drill which strictly complied with the protocols and guidelines set by IATF and National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).

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