Critical Event Management

During the COVID-19 Circuit Breaker period, HTX supported the Singapore Police Force’s resources on the ground by operating long-distance Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) flights for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) for patrolling operations around the industrial areas at Tuas South to ensure security. These autonomous flights enabled long distance and large area patrols, requiring only a very lean team to operate remotely.

Because of HTX’s success, the Home Team is now able to use this technology in areas such as saving lives and protecting properties, and enhancing public safety and security.

Beyond Visual Line of Sight Flights useful for Emergency Services and First Responders

These Beyond Visual Line of Sight flights for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles are particularly useful for carrying out patrols and security operations in areas which may be inaccessible or where situations are too risky for manual operations.

Senior Assistant Commissioner of Police (SAC) How Kwang Hwee, Director of Operations Department, said, “The Singapore Police Force (SPF) continues to work with HTX and industry partners to embrace new technologies to enhance our operational capabilities. The development of BVLOS drones is the next phase in SPF’s UAV operations. Recently, BVLOS drones have been successfully deployed to complement officers on the ground in various operations.”

They can be used as a first responder to provide a situational picture of an incident site, such as a big-scale or high-security event with large crowds, and for sustained and routine patrols. As videos from the UAVs can be streamed to the Police Operations Command Centre, the Police can rapidly view and assess the situation before deciding on the appropriate resources to send to the ground.

Mr K Shanmugam, Minister for Home Affairs and Minister for Law, viewed a BVLOS UAV flight demonstration at the Tuas View Fire Station. He said: “This development is a key milestone in the Home Team’s use of cutting-edge technologies to transform the way we operate. HTX and the Home Team Departments must continue to innovate and find ways to harness technology to enhance the Home Team’s effectiveness in keeping Singapore safe and secure.”

Other situations where BVLOS UAVs can play a critical role include the detection of hazardous materials, the monitoring of fire scenes, and the delivery of essential supplies, which can include Automated External Defibrillators (AED) during critical missions like building collapses to help achieve a shorter response time for life-threatening cardiac arrest cases.

The ability to commission BVLOS flights will increase the efficiency of Home Team operations and empower frontline officers to focus on higher-order tasks.

 

 

PHOTO: The HTX RAUS team involved in the development of this advanced drone capability: (from left) Vanessia Choo, Low Hsien Ming, Cheng Wee Kiang, Chua Song Heng, Looi Xinglun

(Photo Credit: HTX)

The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) awarded a $400,000 grant to Griffith University researchers to develop a network of energy-efficient smart sensors that will help Vietnam combat flooding.

The project aims to create a web of micro-sensors spread throughout Ho Chi Minh (HCM) City to monitor flood levels in real-time. Associate Professor Dzung Dao, Head of Mechanical Engineering and Industrial Design, is leading the project along with Saigon Hi-Tech Park Labs and the University of Southern Queensland.

Dao noted that HCM City, which is the largest city in Vietnam, faces weekly deluges of floodwater that severely impacts more than 60% of its citizens and causes severe economic loss every year. The first step to overcoming the problem is developing a sensory system throughout the city that monitors water levels to find out exactly where and when it is flooding.

Several flood detection systems have been tried in the past, but as these used cameras and conventional sensors and communication systems they were costly and had power consumption issues, he noted.

As per news reports, the energy-efficient wireless sensor network will use tiny nano-sensors, that can be mass-produced for a fraction of the cost and with significantly lower power consumption. Hundreds of these sensors deployed on land and in rivers will wirelessly feed flood information back to a hub on the internet creating a smart long-range sensor network.

The team discovered that as the sensors get smaller, they start to take on interesting properties. They get increasingly sensitive to changes in the environment and get stronger, Dao explained. The hot and humid weather, heavy rain, and high outflow from rivers, urbanised areas, and obsoleted sewage systems also leads to poor performance and lifespan for flood detection sensors. However, the new, tiny silicon carbide sensors are robust enough to withstand a long deployment in these harsh environments.

The internet-linked sensor network will act as an early flood detection and warning system. It will assist emergency services and warn citizens in the city via a mobile phone application, helping people avoid flooded areas and mitigating human and economic losses in HCM City.

The sensor network is also the essential first step to developing an automated response system for the prevention of local flooding in the city using stormwater drainage infrastructure to capture, divert, or pump water to less flooded areas. Once the team has a proof-of-concept of the smart monitoring network in HCM City, it envisions similar systems being installed in further regions of Vietnam and other countries also affected by economically crippling flooding.

Vietnam has been pushing for more energy-conscious solutions and recently launched the online EVNSOLAR platform for roof-top solar power.

As OpenGov Asia reported, EVNSOLAR provides comprehensive solutions for potential investors, including both households and enterprises, in developing rooftop solar power. Customers will have easier access to contractors who can offer reasonable prices, as well as banks and financial organisations that provide credit support solutions.

The contractors joining the platform must commit to providing products and services that meet the quality of German evaluation standards. Soon, the platform will be developed for mobile applications and its tools and technologies will be further improved to promote connection and interaction among users.

Governments and authorities are working harder than ever to protect their nation and keep their citizens safe from crises, ranging from natural disasters to terrorist threats to global pandemics.

One step that has proved invaluable to help avert crisis is to have an effective public warning system in place. To be effective, public warning systems need to involve the communities at risk, facilitate public education and awareness of the risks, disseminate alerts and warnings, and ensure there is a constant state of preparedness.

The public warning system should comprise of a robust multi-channel communication strategy, a critical event management plan and the supporting technology and software to execute the strategy and plan.

Public warning systems – Crucial safety feature for countries endangered by natural disasters

Natural disasters are on the rise, one more catastrophic than the next. The goal for governments and authorities is to protect their country and people before, during and after these critical events.

These warnings cannot be effective if people do not buy into them, therefore warnings from authorities need to be timely and need to be accurate. The authority’s ability to communicate with the public is paramount.

India

One government that has seen the value in deploying a public warning system as well as having a strong critical event management plan in place is the Government of Odisha in India. They experienced a deadly super cyclone in 1999, so when Super-cyclone Fani hit in May 2019, due to the government’s preparedness and planning, and the public warning system that had been put in place, crisis was averted.

Their evacuation plan could be classified as an early warning success story and quite an achievement for a poor state in India being able to move a million people to safety within a day or two. The public warning system was provided to the Odisha government by Everbridge, experts in critical event management and public warning systems.

Plan. Alert. Respond. Recover

Everbridge has been working with governments throughout the world and on various types of critical events. As of 2019 they have 3,662 clients in the public safety sector, and of those 3,612 are actively operating a public warning system with 467 of them using cell broadcast. Everbridge reported having sent 3.1 billion messages in 2019.

They advise that the industry best practice to public warning is to communicate. Communicate with all stakeholders, communicate across all stages of the incident, and communicate with the right people at the right time. Leverage local intelligence and maximise the effectiveness to the public warning system using mobile broadcast and location-based SMS.

Recently selected by Peru’s Ministry of Transport and Communications to power their emergency warning messaging system, they have also been deployed widely throughout Europe and are used nationwide in countries such as Iceland, Greece, The Netherlands and Sweden. Everbridge are active in states in India and are working closely with the governments in Singapore and Australia .

Australia

In Australia , the state and federal authorities have been working tirelessly to combat the fire crisis. a crisis that is present in every state and occurs regularly throughout the year.

In combination with Australia’s major telecommunications companies, the Everbridge Public Warning solution will be used to power Emergency Alert Australia, providing population-wide alerting to help reach the country’s over 25 million residents and approximately 9 million annual visitors.

Anyone in an area where a sudden, critical event occurs such as fire, extreme weather or a terror attack, residents and visitors to Australia will receive location-based SMS notifications on their mobile phones, in addition to smart phone mobile app notifications and fixed line voice alerts, among other modes of communication.

Everbridge Public Warning leverages existing telecom infrastructure, with no opt-in required, to reach everyone within a geographic area to reduce disaster risk, support first responder communications, and analyse disaster communication effectiveness for subsequent mitigation activities.

“Our Public Warning solution enables government organizations and public safety agencies to immediately connect with every person in an affected area during a critical event regardless of nationality, residency or mobile telephone handset type,” said Jaime Ellertson, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Everbridge.

“Australia has served as a model example for population-wide alerting and emergency preparedness over the past decade, and we are honoured to support them on the evolution of their national system.”

The Power of a Public Warning System during a Pandemic

Governments are currently dealing with different phases of the pandemic whether it is in lockdown, gradual exit or containment phase. It is worth noting the countries that are currently deploying a public warning system are now reporting fewer cases of COVID-19

The criticality of population alerting has never been more relevant than during the current outbreak of COVID-19.

Norway

The citizens of Norway, for example, received critical countrywide communications earlier this year during the onset of COVID-19. The Norwegian Directorate for Health sent a record 5.4 million messages to every mobile phone in Norway using Everbridge Public Warning.

Norway relies on its Directorate for Health to send critical messages to mobile phones before, during and after an emergency. With this platform, The Directorate for Health is able to reach Norway’s over five million residents and the country’s even larger number of approximately eight million annual visitors. The Directorate for Health also sent a message to all non-Norwegian phones roaming inside the country in English, French, German, Spanish, Polish and Russian, providing critical instructions for foreign nationals.

“Governments require the best of both options – the capability to deliver a massive number of messages very quickly as well as the ability to target precisely who receives alerts. Everbridge represents the only population alerting provider that eliminates these trade-offs and delivers optimised capabilities based on the needs of the use case in each country.” said Imad Mouline, Chief Technology Officer at Everbridge.

The Public Warning System combines cell-broadcast and address-, group-, and location-based, multi-channel technologies.

The hybrid platform enables countries to protect against coronavirus by sharing updates on COVID-19 hotspots, coordinating first responders and healthcare resources, establishing two-way communications with at-risk populations, and manage disruptions to transportation, education, and other critical services.

Given the impact to public safety and economies around the world from the ongoing threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, and other potential disasters and crisis, every government can benefit from a modern and scalable platform to reach all citizens effectively and efficiently in times of crisis.

A pioneer in airdrop technology for humanitarian aid and disaster relief, recently announced its SkyPACK will be featured at Cobra Gold 2020 in Thailand. The event is co-hosted by the Royal Thai and U.S. Armed Forces and represents the world’s largest joint military exercise.

The company will demonstrate its SkyPACK airdrop technology by dispersing 5,000 SkyPACK, via drones and helicopters, in simulated flood, earthquake and fire disaster responses. The airdrops are designed to deliver and distribute aid aerially in the immediate aftermath of a disaster, bypassing obstacles to aid delivery such as damaged airports, ports and roads or hostile ground conditions.

Each SkyPACK carries up to 10oz of aid, including water, food and medicine. The CEO of the firm stated that the company was formed to provide the Humanitarian Aid community ways to quickly reach – often within critical hours – disaster victims that traditional disaster response cannot. The SkyPACK compliments other forms of aid delivery, it is the new standard of care in disaster response, he added.

CEM paramount to coping with pandemics and other crises

The aforementioned solution is an excellent example of how companies and governments can collaborate to provide essential disaster relief services through technology. This can also be understood as Critical Event Management technology.

The COVID-19 pandemic has drawn attention to the urgent need for better crisis management technologies. According to Everbridge, an effective Critical Event Management program and strategy is an integrated, end-to-end process that enables organisations to significantly speed up responses to critical events and improve outcomes by mitigating or eliminating the impact of a threat.

The question, however, is how can a critical event management technology like this be rolled out rapidly and effectively?

Everbridge notes that to execute a CEM strategy, the following steps must be addressed:

  1. Build partnerships with leadership

Critical events can impact different areas of the business, and often impact more than one. Build alliances across the chief security officer (CSO), chief information security officer (CISO), and chief information officer (CIO) at the very least. Combining the experience, insights, and intelligence from across the organisation makes it possible to quickly understand the root cause of an event and ensure a rapid response and operational continuity.

  1. Assess your sources of information

Pulling all of your risk information together into one place streamlines your threat assessment process. Thus, align sources, information, and evaluate the risks and the impact to your organization across five key asset types: People, Buildings, IT Systems, Supply Chain and Brand/Reputation. Your data sources should be vetted and verified, involving geo-targeted intelligence related to weather, terrorism and other potential disruptions. Verified sources and analysis eliminate the noise and enable you to generate the most impactful information while eliminating false positives.

  1. Identify and locate critical assets

During every event, a resilient organisation will know where employees, travellers, visitors, offices, manufacturing facilities, and other critical assets are located. It’s also critical to know how they are interconnected and the dependencies between them. Beyond knowing the location and interdependencies, organisations also need an idea of how much it will cost if these assets are impacted by an event. For instance, perhaps a critical business application goes down resulting in thousands of dollars in losses every minute. It’s important to calculate losses based on the overall use case, such as how many employees are going to be impacted.

  1. Quantify and analyse risk

It is critical to determine what is critical and what isn’t. Answer the big question: What is the impact and exposure? An effective approach is to differentiate between threats and risks across the board and to then quantify risk based on the threat, the threat’s nature, the organization’s overall vulnerability or exposure, the overall impact, which may go beyond the immediate assets, people and consider the overall timeline, which is often dynamic. For instance, it’s not sufficient to ask, “How many employees are in HQ right now?” since employees are constantly on the move. Or perhaps a geopolitical issue or event is going to cause a disruption to the supply chain, but the organization won’t feel the impact for two months.

When cities, states and countries are struggling to respond to multiple critical events, robust public warning systems can be a lifeline for authorities in tackling them. At the same time, errors and loopholes in established systems and protocols can exacerbate the situation.

This is clearly exemplified in the California which, already struggling to fight COVID-19, has to deal with multiple wildfires ravaging the state simultaneously in different counties. The west coast wildfires that have painted the Californian skies an ominous hue have further threatened public safety and are creating a deep sense of panic among residents.

When the LNU Lightning Complex fire exploded over 36 hours ago, expanding from three burns across 12,000 acres to more than a half-dozen fires scorching more than 120,000 acres, parts of the Bay Area were knocked back on their heels.

Officials said, in Vacaville, where police, firefighters and Solano County sheriff’s deputies were evacuating people door to door in the middle of the night, someone had to go to the home of an Emergency Operations Center worker and wake him up because his cellphone had been set to vibrate.

In Napa County, emergency managers considered sending out a targeted Amber Alert-style message to cellphones telling residents to stay vigilant in case they needed to evacuate but ultimately had to use other means that potentially reach fewer people.

“During the construction of the message content, it was discovered that there was a software error in the system, so we instead issued our message utilizing the NIXLE alert tool,” said Janet Upton, a county spokeswoman.

And then there is Sonoma County, where, unlike three years ago when the previous emergency management director failed to alert some residents of a fire at all, the department’s current leader is concerned with having alerted too many.

“Using this system is like doing your taxes every time,” Chris Godley, Sonoma County’s director of emergency management, said of their alert software. “It’s a very challenging, technical process each time you do this, even though we’re relatively well-versed.”

“We didn’t expect the fire to come into our county the way it did,” said Solano County Sheriff’s Deputy Le’Ron Cummings.

Napa, Sonoma and Solano counties, among others, introduced high-low sirens, modeled after the European siren sound, intended to alert the public of an imminent disaster. All three also boosted public enrollment in their subscription-based alert system.

But possibly the most noticeable change was the use of the federal Integrated Public Warning and Alert System (IPAWS) and its Amber Alert-style warning, called Wireless Emergency Alert. For years the technology was notoriously avoided by emergency managers because its messages were considered too short to be helpful while often reaching too many people unnecessarily. Despite the system glitches the authorities in the county believe in the power of public warning systems during emergencies.

“It’s extremely helpful where you may not get tourists signed up for your local [program],” said Henry Wofford, Napa County sheriff’s spokesman. “Our whole purpose is to get it in their hands on their cellphones, in case they’re not at home, in case they’re in their backyard watering their lawns.”

Recently the country of Norway has also adopted a public warning system to alert citizens travelling internationally to mitigate COVID-19 risks. Country’s Directorate of health is utilizing the system to notify Norwegians’ of the changing threat profile and related safety protocols such as the related quarantine guidelines.

Critical event management has come to the fore with the pandemic. Forecasting, planning and management of critical events help organisations and authorities prevent disruption of life and damage to property.

Everbridge’s public warning solutions can make a significant difference in mitigating harm caused by such critical events. They provide richer intelligence and correlating threats with locations of assets and people ensuring more rapid and comprehensive incident assessment and remediation.

According to a press release by the Ministry of Science and Technology, India is witnessing a water shortage, and agriculture, which uses around 70% of water, is the most vulnerable sector of the economy.

To address this, the government plans to install solar pumps at almost every farmland across the country. Further, the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research-Central Mechanical Engineering Research Institute (CSIR-CMERI) is working to reduce the amount of water consumption required for irrigation. Initially, the organisation had considered drip irrigation a sustainable solution, however, it realised it is not an affordable method for marginal and small farmers that contribute significantly to the Indian agrarian ecosystem.

Moreover, according to available data, pesticides play a large role in increasing crop productivity, but often large amounts of pesticide sprays are wasted because of a lack of appropriate machinery. The soil, water, and air become polluted as a result.

Due to the harmful effects of pesticides, there is increasing pressure to reduce their use and make spraying more efficient. For this, research on the science of surface tension, viscosity, wettability, air drag, dynamic pressure, and particle size must be carried out.

CSIR-CMERI developed two variants of battery-operated spray systems: the Back-Pack Sprayer with a capacity of 5 litres for marginal farmers; the Compact Trolley Sprayer with a capacity of 10 litres for small farmers. The sprayers are equipped with two separate tanks and flow control and pressure regulator to handle the different water requirements of the crops. It also features target/site-specific irrigation, maintaining the appropriate dilution of pesticide/fungicide to control pests (on foliage, under the leaves, or in root zones).

Image credit: Press Information Bureau

This creates water-based micro-roughness on the leaf surface and maintains soil moisture levels in a narrow range and allows for weed control. The systems function on solar-powered batteries, enabling its usage even in energy and power-deprived agricultural regions. It will reduce the dependence on price-volatile fossil fuels. The sprayers are simple to develop and easy to learn and implement.

The sprayer’s flow control features help achieve multiple levels of water or pesticide flow, enhancing the flexibility and dynamicity of the coverage area as well as the intensity of the application. The dual-chamber design of the sprayers helps achieve a degree of resource versatility as it allows the system to carry two variants of liquids.

In the experiments conducted at CSIR-CMERI, participating farmers reported that the system helped save 75% of water and 25% time-consumption. Dr Harish Hirani, the Director of CSIR-CMERI explained that the variants are revolutionary in the sphere of precision agriculture because they reduce water usage. The technology will help create agricultural avenues even in arid and semi-arid regions, as water scarcity will no longer be a challenge for the farming community.

Last August, the Indian Prime Minister announced the allocation of US$ 50 billion to the Jal Jeevan Mission, a program to provide piped water to all households in the country by 2024. According to a 2019 report, 82% of rural households do not have piped running water. Even before COVID-19, millions of Indians went without access to clean water, making them susceptible to infectious, water-borne diseases.

The pandemic has drawn attention to the importance of public health and hygiene and affordable, technology-based solutions to deal with large-scale crises. Everbridge, a global leader in critical event management (CEM), recently announced its widescale adoption for its Risk Intelligence situation reports, providing organisations across industry verticals, including healthcare and pharmaceutical, with a specialised COVID-19 risk intelligence package to assist managing the impact of the virus on people, assets, customers, facilities, and supply chains.

Utilising proprietary technology, Everbridge leverages thousands of diverse information sources to provide early warning of incidents at the local, state, national, and international levels. It offers sophisticated technology in the industry for harvesting and filtering multi-lingual incident information

Researchers from Hong Kong Baptist University (HKBU) have developed a COVID-19 alert system that will send a message to users through a mobile app if they and an infected person have visited the same place within a period that gives rise to risks of exposure.

The system will not collect users’ personal information and location data, thereby protecting individuals’ privacy while alerting them on disease transmission risks associated with confirmed infection cases.

HKBU plans to launch a trial run of the system on campus in the new semester to enhance COVID-19 risks alert capability inside campus venues and during teaching and learning activities. Staff and students can join the trial voluntarily.

Developed by a research team led by the Associate Head and Professor of the Department of Computer Science at HKBU, the system has two anonymous modes of operation: venue-to-person tracing and person-to-person tracing. The system is easy to operate and users can simply use it by downloading the mobile application.

By taking a decentralised design approach, the system, which has been developed in four months, will not collect any personal information and location data. It is a safe and reliable system that uses the latest cryptographic technology to protect users’ privacy. It also includes a mechanism that prevents users from falsely claiming that they are one of the contacts of a confirmed case.

Under the venue-to-person tracing mode, when users scan the QR code before entering the venue, the venue information and the time of visit will be saved onto their mobiles. If a user tests positive for the virus, he will receive a password to log on to the system, which will then broadcast the information, including the venues he has visited and the visiting times in the past 14 days, to all users’ mobiles.

The system will send an alert to the users through their mobile phones if they and the infected user have visited the same place in the same period in the past two weeks. This will enable users to take appropriate action, including virus tests.

The person-to-person tracing mode is supported by Bluetooth Low Energy, a wireless communication technology. If two users stay within two meters of each other for a certain period, their mobile phones will exchange an anonymous code via Bluetooth and then save it in the respective phone’s database. The anonymous code associated with each user’s mobile phone will change regularly.

If a user tests positive for the virus, the other users’ mobile phones will receive the codes broadcast by the infected user’s mobile phone over the past two weeks. By comparing the codes in the database of the mobile phone, the system can assess the risk for each user that came into contact with the infected person, and set off the alarm if necessary.

Users’ privacy is well protected because all the information is stored on an individual’s mobile phone. HKBU plans to launch a trial run of the venue-to-person tracing mode of the alert system on campus. The experience of launching the system, including the lessons learned throughout the technological development process and in terms of encouraging members of the University and visitors to use the system, will help the Government and relevant organisations combat the pandemic.

The Vice-President (Research and Development) of HKBU stated since the early stages of the pandemic, HKBU has been boosting various research projects related to the virus research projects and the development of this alert system is one of the results.

The system can effectively warn people who have been in contact with a confirmed case, but it does not collect personal information. It strikes a balance between disease prevention and privacy protection.

As the global pandemic is not yet at its end, the team will make efforts to collaborate with the Government and the relevant departments to help society by transferring the University’s research and contributing to the fight against the pandemic in Hong Kong.

CEM tech is a must

The COVID-19 pandemic has drawn attention to the urgent need for better crisis management technologies. According to Everbridge, an effective Critical Event Management program and strategy is an integrated, end-to-end process that enables organisations to significantly speed up responses to critical events and improve outcomes by mitigating or eliminating the impact of a threat.

This CEM system would mean that business continuity, disaster recovery, active assailant, emergency response, natural disaster, IT incident risk management, and mass notification would all be rolled up into an easy-to-execute, strategic plan with long-term benefits.

In May 2020, Everbridge hosted Coronavirus: the Road to Recovery on May 20th and 21st – a virtual symposium that brought together business, healthcare, and government leaders to discuss best practices of return to work. It was designed to help organisations around the world chart a path forward.

The event gathered nearly 20 executive speakers from major multinational organisations. Speakers addressed the needs of executive-level decision-makers in areas related to security, operations, risk, human resources, clinical operations, emergency management, and supply chain.

Critical event management has come to the fore with the pandemic. Forecasting, planning and management of such events help organisations prevent disruption of life and damage to property.

Everbridge Critical Event Management solutions can make a significant difference in mitigating harm caused by such critical events. They provide richer intelligence and correlating threats with locations of assets and people ensuring more rapid and comprehensive incident assessment and remediation.

The Cordillera Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CRDRRMC) is engaging with local DRRM stakeholders for the second year of the Cordillera Resilience Caravan through an online platform.

The Office of Civil Defense (OCD) in the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) in 2019 led the conduct of Provincial DRRM Caravans in the region, which served as a platform for the Regional and the Provincial DRRM Councils to interface and discuss important matters pertaining to the implementation of various DRRM-related programs and activities. It also enabled CRDRRMC to update stakeholders on the programs, projects, and activities being implemented in the region.

This year, in embracing the “new and better normal” resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, OCD-CAR led the first of two-scheduled Cordillera Virtual Resilience Caravan on 25 August. Provincial and municipal DRRM officers from 42 local government units (LGUs) in the provinces of Apayao, Benguet, Kalinga, and Ifugao participated.

At the event, the OCD Director for Policy Development and Planning Service Tecson, John Lim, gave updates on the move to create a Department of Disaster Resilience and on the Accredited Community Disaster Volunteers initiative.

At the regional level, a representative of the OCD-CAR Operations Section provided updates on COVID-19 responses in the region. Representatives from the regional offices of the Bureau of Local Government Finance, National Economic Development Authority, and Department of the Interior and Local Government presented status reports on the Bayanihan and Local DRRM funds, the Cordillera Rehabilitation and Recovery Plan for COVID-19, and the preparedness initiative for hydromet hazards, respectively.

The CRDRRMC Chair and OCD-CAR Regional Director Albert Mogol outlined the importance of the activity, which is to impart relevant information, strengthen harmony, and intensify convergence among all stakeholders from the national and regional levels to local DRRM stakeholders.

In response, the Kalinga Provincial DRRM Chairperson Governor lauded OCD-CAR and the CRDRRMC for spearheading the initiative, which is important for sharing knowledge, experiences, and good practices, as well as for the exchange of ideas and analysis that will help ensure a maximum level of preparedness through the harmonisation of strategies and approaches.

He also assured that the Kalinga provincial government and DRRM Office will do their part as it embraces the new normal and in preparedness and response for possible hazards that the rainy season may bring.

The National DRRM Council Executive Director and OCD National Administrator USEC, Ricardo Jalad, in a video message, commended OCD-CAR, the CRDRRMC, Cordillera LGUs, and other partners in pushing for a safer, adaptive, and disaster-resilient Cordillera as the danger posed by the COVID pandemic can further be aggravated by other natural hazards.

The second Regional Resilience Caravan is set on 1 September to be joined by DRRM stakeholders in 40 LGUs from the provinces of Abra and Mountain Province and Baguio City.

The government recently developed a digital contract tracing application ‘StaySafe.PH’ for Angeles City residents. The application collates information on the users’ health condition, obtained through a 300-metre radius scan.

As OpenGov reported, after downloading the application, users need to answer questions regarding their current health condition, which will then be recorded in the database. It will help identify those who have mild and severe conditions, and users of the app will be able to see those who are within their 300-metre radius. A representative noted that once the city government uploaded positive cases, the data will be shown to all users so they will be more aware and conscious of the places where they are going.

Critical event management has come to the fore with the pandemic. Forecasting, planning and management of such events help organisations prevent disruption of life and damage to property.

Everbridge Critical Event Management solutions can make a significant difference in controlling damage caused by such critical events. They provide richer intelligence and correlating threats with locations of assets and people ensuring more rapid and comprehensive incident assessment and remediation.

OpenGov TV

Understanding Critical Event Management From Different Perspectives.