Prepare now, be ready - don't wait for the next earthquake !

03 Jun 2011

imagePrepare now, be ready - don't wait for the next earthquake !

The National Emergency Operation Center (NEOC) conducted a simulation exercise in Kathmandu recently with the scenario of 7.2 magnitude earthquake to test the draft Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for response coordination at the national level. The event was supported by UNDP Comprehensive Disaster Risk Management Programme (CDRMP).

Altogether 120 participants engaged in the simulation exercise, divided into nine groups representing different response agencies such as the Nepal Army, Nepal Police, Armed Police Force, Nepal Red Cross Society, Nepal Emergency Operation Center, Central Disaster Relief Committee, Municipalities, District Disaster Relief Committees and the UN Clusters.

The simulation exercise highlighted the importance of coordination and communication between different agencies when responding to a disaster. The lessons learned from the simulation exercise have been incorporated into the NEOC’s Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).

The NEOC was set up under the Disaster Management Section of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA) in late 2010 to direct disaster response operation in a coordinated and effective manner. Under the current Natural Calamity Act, the NEOC will operate as the hub for coordination, communication and management of effective response to disasters in Nepal.

Currently, the NEOC is preparing a national preparedness and response plan, collecting inventories of disaster incidents and resources that could be tapped and utilized in the event of any major disaster in the country.

Established with the financial support from the Government of Australia through AusAID, technical support from UNDP, Nepal Army, Nepal Police, Armed Police Force, UN’s Department for Safety & Security (UNDSS) and the World Food Programme (WFP), the NEOC’s Disaster Information Management System is supported by the Government of Nepal‘s High Level Commission on Information
Technology.

UNDP is also supporting the NEOC to establish16 Emergency Operations Center at the district level through CDRMP.