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Disaster Management: Mass Emergencies & Disasters

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Question:

Discuss about the Disaster Management for Mass Emergencies & Disasters.

 

Answer:

Introduction To Scenario

Critical analysis of disaster scenario

The Nepal earthquake which happened in the year 2015 can be termed as a disaster that resulted in mass level destruction. It can be expressed that the disaster resulted in the death of more than 9000 people including local people, travellers, and tourists. In addition to this, approximately 22000 individuals got injured because of the earthquake (Xu, Nyerges, & Nie, 2014). The earthquake was of 7.8 magnitudes, and the natural disaster did huge damage to life and property in Kathmandu. According to the estimation of United Nations, the life of almost 8 million people was affected because of the earthquake. Apart from this, the earthquake is also considered as the worst quake to strike in the 80 years history of Kathmandu. On the other hand, it can be critically argued that just after 17 days of this disaster, the area became a victim of another earthquake with a magnitude of 7.3 (Bhakta Bhandari, 2014). The government of the country to also asked for local and international support to deal with the damage and carry out reconstructions.

 

Content of the response plan

The earthquake response plan can be termed as the operational plan that consists of detailed strategies and actions taken to deal with situations such as the earthquake. It can be expressed that the plan includes key roles and responsibilities of government, emergency management team, and other regulatory bodies (Rimal, Kunwar, & Zhai, 2017). The content of response plan also includes elements such as critical infrastructure, logistics, emergency social services, coordination of volunteers during the disaster and appropriate communication plan.

Appropriateness of the response

The response plan developed by the government of Nepal can be termed as appropriate as it covers various aspects that are essential in disaster management. For example, the plan emphasizes on encouraging effective communication and coordination between volunteers and other stakeholders during disasters such as the earthquake (Reed, Greulich, Hamer, & Beadling, 2016). Apart from this, the response plan also focuses on areas such as critical information requirement, strategic and public messages, etc.     

Depth of content

The country has developed an in-depth content plan for the purpose of carrying out effective management of disasters. Further, the overall content of the response plan must be effective where it must be capable of providing information to the target people. The main focus of the response plan is on reducing the level of risk that is associated with the earthquake (Poudel, Fitzgerald, Clark, Mehta, & Chhetri, 2015). Further, it has been found that delivering education to the local people in relation to this disaster is necessary like people must use emergency whistle during the earthquake, obtaining training from the local fire department, installing smoke alarms, checking if there is community emergency response team or not (Carpenter & Grünewald, 2016). So, it needs to be ensured well in advance that content is appropriate and its depth needs to be analysed well in advance.

 

Writing and formatting of the response

After any disaster took place it is necessary to record the response of the people who are directly affected due to this. Further, the main reason behind the same is that in future more effective strategies can be developed. Capturing the response of present individuals who are affected due to this disaster is most vital. It can surely assist in mitigating with the risk in the better manner and can be effective in every possible manner (O'Sullivan, Kuziemsky, Toal-Sullivan, & Corneil, 2013). Writing and formatting of the response can be done in a separate register that can be utilized for future in the proper manner.

A Response Plan To The Given Scenario 500

Prevention

It can be termed as the first and foremost stage of a response plan where the regulatory authorities and government of Nepal will be required to emphasize on the identification of different hazards. The vision statement will be to identify various hazards and develop strategies to mitigate the risk associated with the same. Here, the government will need to carry out task and activities which can support in reducing the overall impact of natural disasters such as an earthquake (Lee, 2016). In simpler terms, hazards can be defined as the key risk present during disasters and which can result in loss of life and property during the same. Practicing safe earthquake procedures twice a year will be another major component of the response plan.

Preparation

In this stage of the response plan, individuals, government, and other regulatory authorities will work with each other to plan, prepare and train to deal with different types of disasters such as the earthquake. Here, the evacuation plan will be developed along with ensuring the availability of stay/go. In addition to this, the objective will be that the discussions within family, neighbours, and friends on situations such as earthquakes will be encouraged at regular intervals (Kunz, Reiner, & Gold, 2014). The aim in this stage will be to prepare the communities and residents regarding coping with the consequences of an emergency. 

 

Response

In this stage of the response plan, the volunteers, local community, government and other regulatory authorities will be responding quickly according to the need, and overall requirement of the emergency situation faced because of the earthquake (Devkota, Doberstein, & Nepal, 2016). Here, the plan and strategies developed during the stage of preparedness stage will be taken into consideration by Nepal. The key objective of this stage is to ensure that negative impact of the earthquake on life and property has been minimised to a great extent. On the other hand, individuals and people affected by the earthquake will be provided with immediate relief in this stage. Psychological first aid will be used immediately after the earthquake as it will assist in supporting the person to naturally recover from the injury or damages (Khan, Johar, & Baba, 2017). In this stage, strategies such as helping people to feel them safe, connecting them with others, proving emotional and social support will be taken into consideration. Psychological first aid will also be offered to the people who thought that they were about to die, individuals with mental illness and previous traumatic experiences.  

Recovery

It can be termed as the last stage of recovery plan where reconstruction will be carried out. All the volunteers, government and other regulatory authorities will focus on taking corrective measures and developing strategies to restore the place and areas affected to their previous state (Ha, 2017). However, it can be critically argued that the stage of recovery is going to be a very challenging task and combine efforts of all will be required to restore the area and properties in Nepal to their previous state.  It can also be expressed that at the time of restoring the focus will be more on building infrastructures and communities that are effective enough to reduce the pre-disaster risk (Xu, Nyerges, & Nie, 2014).

 

Strategic Plan

Goals and objectives for performing and visual disaster program

Developing public awareness, training and information dissemination can be termed as three major and most important element of visual disaster program. To make the program successful, the focus should be laid upon the mentioned above three areas in an effective manner. It is also suggested that at the time of developing training and development program, the participation of all community members should be encouraged (Giambelli, Vitti, & Bezzi, 2016). A comprehensive training with regards to visual disaster program is also essential to reduce the damages caused by the earthquake to the life and property within Nepal. The objective of performing visual disaster program is to carry out risk auditing. It can be stated that risk auditing is essential as it directly helps in understanding and identifying the key areas which are at greater risk.

Development

Development of the plan for dealing with the issue of the earthquake as one of the disasters and reducing its overall impact appropriate planning is needed well in advance. Development of the plan will take place by understanding the resources required such as what kind of assistance will be provided to the people who are affected due to the earthquake (Garge, Ha, & Khoo, 2015). The key actions that will be taken in the actions involve utilities, building and development policies, facilities that need to be provided to the people who are affected. Apart from this, effective development is also possible by undertaking different measures such as emergency communication strategy, operational and community recovery. In short, it is necessary to ensure well in advance that development strategy is effective where it is possible to provide assistance to every individual who are affected due to the earthquake (Erdelj, Natalizio, Chowdhury, & Akyildiz, 2017). The development plan will also include providing education to the people so that they can know what are the strategies that can be undertaken so as to deal with the disaster such as the earthquake.

Goals and Objectives for disaster other as appropriate

In order to mitigate the risk associated with earthquake different goals and objectives are present that needs to be focused on. Below is the detailed plan:

Phase

Goal

Actions include

Mitigation before disaster

Decreasing the overall impact on infrastructure

Time to time structural update of utilities, facilities and development policies

Mitigation before disaster

Reducing the overall impact on community

Providing education to residents, businesses, senior and daycare facilities

During the disaster

Providing effective response and full time assistance during earthquake

Operational response plan, rapid damage assessment, emergency transportation strategy

Recovery after disaster

Recovery in the months and years following earthquake

Operational and community recovery

Above shown are the goals and objectives that will be set for handling earthquake in effective manner and it will directly assist in reducing its overall impact. This will surely assist in reducing the overall level of earthquake and can act as development tool also.

Some other objectives of the plan are as follows:

  • To reduce earthquake risks by decreasing vulnerability of infrastructure and people
  • To minimize loss of live and the infrastructure due to earthquake
  • Building the capacity of all the stakeholders in order to deal with earthquake

These objectives can surely assist in managing earthquake as one of the issue in best possible manner and can bring favourable results also.

Staffing (Human Resource Management Plan)

It can be expressed that during the disaster such as the earthquake, the human resources management plan will play a very important role in recovering properties and people to the previous state. The government and other regulatory authorities will be focusing on encouraging more active participation from different volunteers. In addition to this, training programs will be carried out so that psychological first aid treatment is provided to people and injured persons in the best possible manner (Dixit, Yatabe, Dahal, & Bhandary, 2013). A team of around 250 volunteers will be developed with an objective to provide quality support and care. Here, the aim of the human resources management plan will be to make sure more and more people are rescued during the operation and at the same time restoring of areas is carried out in the best possible manner. Further, it is necessary to deliver effective training to the team so that they have right knowledge and skills to cope up with the issue of the earthquake.

Recommendations for future responses

  • It can be recommended the earthquake readiness plan should be present every time so that the adverse impact caused by such disasters can be lower down. In this stage, the government and regulatory authorities need to focus on four key areas which are preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation.
  • It can also be suggested that more focus should be laid on carrying out disaster training programs. The rationale behind this is that such programs will support the people in local the community to become aware of the actions which can be taken before and after the earthquake.
  • After the earthquake, it is suggested that people should protect themselves by hiding in safe and secure areas within their homes. Furthermore, individuals should remain calm, and it is also recommended that they should stay in their homes instead of running outside.
  • The government and regulatory authorities in Nepal should emphasize more on developing houses and buildings with earthquake resilience. The design and structure of buildings should be created in such a way that they can withstand the earthquake in the best possible manner. The rationale behind this suggestion is that it will help in preventing the building form getting collapse and thus, will cause less damage to life and property in the country.
 

References

Bhakta Bhandari, R. (2014). Social capital in disaster risk management; a case study of social capital mobilization following the 1934 Kathmandu Valley earthquake in Nepal. Disaster Prevention and Management , 314-328.

Carpenter, S., & Grünewald, F. (2016). Disaster preparedness in a complex urban system: the case of Kathmandu Valley, Nepal. Disasters , 411-431.

Devkota, B. P., Doberstein, B., & Nepal, S. K. (2016). Social Capital and Natural Disaster: Local Responses to 2015 Earthquake in Kathmandu. International Journal of Mass Emergencies & Disasters .

Dixit, A. M., Yatabe, R., Dahal, R. K., & Bhandary, N. P. (2013). Initiatives for earthquake disaster risk management in the Kathmandu Valley. Natural hazards , 631-654.

Erdelj, M., Natalizio, E., Chowdhury, K. R., & Akyildiz, I. F. (2017). Help from the sky: Leveraging UAVs for disaster management. IEEE Pervasive Computing , 24-32.

Garge, R. N., Ha, H., & Khoo, S. (2015). Disaster Risk Management and the Role of the Armed Forces: Critical Analysis of Reactive Disaster Management in India. In Strategic Disaster Risk Management in Asia. India: Springer India.

Giambelli, M., Vitti, A., & Bezzi, M. (2016). Towards a decision support system for environmental emergencies management in poor settlements in the Kathmandu Valley (Nepal). . INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF SPATIAL DATA INFRASTRUCTURES RESEARCH, , 49-72.

Ha, K. M. (2017). Plant indicator status and implications for natural disaster management in both developed communities and indigenous communities. In Natural Resources Forum. New Jersey: Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Khan, M. G., Johar, F., & Baba, A. N. (2017). DISASTER MANAGEMENT RISK PERCEPTION OF LOCAL COMMUNITIES. Jurnal Kemanusiaan .

Kunz, N., Reiner, G., & Gold, S. (2014). Investing in disaster management capabilities versus pre-positioning inventory: a new approach to disaster preparedness. International Journal of Production Economics , 261-272.

Lee, A. C. (2016). Barriers to evidence-based disaster management in Nepal: a qualitative study. Public health , 99-106.

O'Sullivan, T. L., Kuziemsky, C. E., Toal-Sullivan, D., & Corneil, W. (2013). Unraveling the complexities of disaster management: A framework for critical social infrastructure to promote population health and resilience. Social Science & Medicine , 238-246.

Poudel, B. R., Fitzgerald, G., Clark, M., Mehta, A., & Chhetri, M. (2015). Disaster Management in Nepal: Media engagement in the Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. Planet@ risk .

Reed, P. L., Greulich, J. D., Hamer, M. J., & Beadling, C. W. (2016). republic of Senegal disaster preparedness and response exercise. Annals of Global Health , 420-421.

Rimal, B. Z., Kunwar, R., & Zhai, Y. (2017). Monitoring Urban Growth and the Nepal Earthquake 2015 for Sustainability of Kathmandu Valley, Nepa. Land , 42.

Xu, J., Nyerges, T. L., & Nie, G. (2014). Modeling and representation for earthquake emergency response knowledge: perspective for working with geo-ontology. International Journal of Geographical Information Science , 185-205.

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