BAGUIO CITY – Mayor Mauricio Domogan urged all sectors to actively participate in the “Baguio Shake Drill” citywide earthquake preparedness exercise set on March 31 from 10:30-11:30 a.m.
“I encourage everyone to take this exercise seriously so we will be able to realize its objectives of gauging the city’s preparedness for this type of calamity,” the mayor said.
The Office of Civil Defense Cordillera (OCD-CAR) headed by regional director Alex Uy in coordination with the City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (CDRRMC) under officer Yolanda Munar last Monday formed a core group composed of the various government agencies, utility companies and private establishments to spearhead the conduct of the activity.
They agreed to come up with parameters to guide all sectors in the implementation of the drill.
Unlike past drills which were confined to certain institutions and establishments, this year’s exercise will be done simultaneously in the whole of the city and will involve all of the 128 barangays. It is envisioned to depict the worst-case scenario complete with the snuffing of the so-called lifelines or electric, water and phone service outages.
Uy and Glenn Lardizabal of the CDRRMC said the idea was to allow each sector to project their own scenarios for them to realize their situations and contemplate on would-be solutions, all on their own.
From these scenarios, the core group will evaluate each sector to determine their level of preparedness and this will later be considered as a tool to improve the city’s reference system for disaster management.
The core group agreed to come up with parameters and mechanics to serve as guide for the sectors in conducting the exercise.
The city will serve as a pilot area in the exercise which is considered as OCD’s major disaster risk reduction and management activity which aims to imbibe among residents the concepts of earthquake preparation by familiarizing themselves with the duck-cover-hold technique and the evacuation plans and procedures.
Domogan earlier issued an administrative order activating and implementing the incident command system to test the city’s preparedness and response schemes through the citywide drill.
He tasked the various government and private agencies to do their part.
The Dept. of Interior and Local Government (DILG) and Association of Barangay Councils were tasked to activate all barangay disaster councils while other line agencies and city government offices along with the business groups, law enforcement and military institutions and media were directed to enforce their own disaster rescue plans.
To effect a true-to-life no-lifeline scenario, utility companies were requested to cut their services for at least 15 minutes.
The nationwide drill is by virtue of a memorandum issued by OCD Administrator Undersecretary Alexander Pama for the conduct of the first quarter nationwide simultaneous earthquake drill which will be launched in Clark Airbase./Aileen P. Refuerzo