Philippine Standard Time
 

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The Department of Science and Technology - Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (DOST-PHIVOLCS) encourages the public to participate in the first quarter Nationwide Simultaneous Earthquake Drill (NSED) on February 21, 2019, 2:00 PM. The city government of Iloilo will host the ceremonial pressing of the button, followed by the demonstration of the evacuation procedure and response preparedness of a coastal barangay, a maritime school, a private hospital, a well-known mall, and the growing business district.

 

On 25 January 1948, a magnitude 8.2 earthquake, which local folks dubbed as the Lady Caycay earthquake, occurred in southwest Panay Island. Iloilo City suffered the brunt of this second largest earthquake in Philippine history, among other towns in the island. “A 100-yard fissure in the earth sprayed black sand and water high into the air”, recalled an eyewitness. The historical Oton Church was severely damaged that it had to be demolished, and the five-storey belfry of Jaro Cathedral toppled. These documented damages indicated a PHIVOLCS Earthquake Intensity Scale (PEIS) scale of VIII, which will be used as the ground shaking scenario for this quarter’s earthquake drill.

 

NSED is an opportune time to test the efficiency and usefulness of the preparedness, response and recovery plans, systems and policies of the local government units, offices and schools; to evaluate the effectiveness of contingency plan; to test the coordination and communication mechanism during response operation; and to understand the command and control mechanism in emergency and disaster operation. DOST Undersecretary Renato Solidum, Jr. says, “DOST-PHIVOLCS hopes that this activity will encourage communities to develop a culture of disaster resilience.”

 

As the agency mandated to monitor and study earthquakes, DOST-PHIVOLCS, in cooperation with the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), pushes for the continued advocacy on earthquake awareness and preparedness since it introduced the conduct of earthquake drills in schools way back 2002.

 

For information about the event, please contact:

Dr. Renato U. Solidum, Jr.

Undersecretary for Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change, DOST

and Officer-in-Charge, PHIVOLCS

(632) 926-2611