Haiti More Prepared for Hurricane Season says Minister Mayard Paul
- Monday, June 04, 2012 1:27 PM
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (defend.ht) - "Our national system of disaster and risk management for the 2012 hurricane season is more enhanced compared to previous years in five areas: communication, information, coordination, operation, training/awareness," said the Minister of the Interior Thierry Mayard Paul on Friday, the first day of the 2012 hurricane season.
The ministry of the interior is confident that in 2012 the government has taken necessary steps to dampen the potential damage that could be caused by the annual stormy season. A Le Nouvellsite article asks citizens to not panic.
Weather reports predict a less active season for hurricanes but in Haiti even heavy rains can threaten many lives.
"... Major hurricanes, with their attendant evils, in terms of heavy rain, very strong winds, landslides, mudslides and even tidal waves along the coast," warned Minister Mayard Paul warning of the potentiality of different scenarios that take lives every year.
"In the field of communication, it should be noted that the chain is updated and procedures are updated for communication between the central, departmental and local levels. Our system is functional and uses various means (cell phone, radio, televisioon, email, etc..)," said the minister speaking of the advancements in communication.
In terms of operation, 38 early warning systems are functional on many rivers in the country, 18 meteorological sensors have been installed in 31 villages that have a high risk of flooding as well as plans for evacuation. The minister said even emergency funds are already available within ten (10) departments.
"The operational capacity of departmental and communal committees are further strengthened. 3041 volunteers are trained under the project funded by the European Union. The municipalities are equipped with emergency response and first aid (302) and volunteers trained in their use.
"Temporary shelters on the order of 900 are set up and 300 others were renovated. At least 400 shelter managers have also been trained," explained Minister of the Interior.
According to Thierry Mayard-Paul, the national system has deployed 32 small boats in the most vulnerable municipalities, with the help of the World Food Program and the European Union. Sixty-four (64) operators and 23 instructors were trained in the use of the equipment in emergency situations. In addition a group of 13 trainers in government emergency communication are working to replicate the training throughout the country.
"The departmental representatives have also been trained in the field. My ministry and the Ministry of Communications are committed to strengthening our communication system by providing national and international expertise. The Emergency Operations Center and National Departmental Centers are operational," he concluded.
Source: Le Nouvelliste