Best practices on disaster assessment, response to be tackled on ACDM meet

MANILA-- Best practices on disaster assessment and response will be among the key topics which will be discussed in the ASEAN Committee on Disaster Management (ACDM) Working Group on Risk Assessment and Awareness which opened Wednesday.

National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) executive director Ricardo Jalad, made this announcement at the sidelights of the event held at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza, Manila.

Sharing of best disaster assessment and response will expedite the release of donations should calamities strike any of the 10 ASEAN member states.

"Yes, definitely. (The ACDM meeting seeks to share) the best practices (in disaster response and assessment among ASEAN countries," he said in an interview with the Philippine News Agency.

"One thing we highlighted in the committee is one tool that we adopted formulated by the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs), that is REDAS (rapid earthquake damage assessment system). Other countries in ASEAN have (similar) best practices of their own and those are part of the discussion," Jalad stressed.

And part of the declaration on the "One ASEAN, One Response" is close cooperation among members to help Southeast Asian nations battered by calamities.

The agreement was signed by President Rodrigo Duterte and other ASEAN leaders in Lao People's Democratic Republic last year.

"(A salient feature of the One ASEAN, One Response) is to help each other in times of disasters and calamities," the NDRRMC chief stressed.

Jalad said the Philippines already benefitted from this declaration as it received a number of generator sets from its ASEAN neighbors during the onslaught of Typhoon "Lawin" in Northern Luzon last Oct. 19.

"They (ASEAN nations) provided to us during typhoon 'Lawin', we received a number of generator sets which we provided to affected communities in Region 2," the NDRRMC chief said.

The ongoing ACDM is hosted by the NDRRMC through the Office of Civil Defense in collaboration with the ASEAN Secretariat-Disaster Management and Humanitarian Assistance.

Representatives from the six member-countries of ACDM namely: Lao PDR, Myanmar, Vietnam, Cambodia, Indonesia and Philippines, are present in the two-day event together with officials from the ASEAN Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance on Disaster Management, Pacific Disaster Center and University of Tokyo. (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency