Iloilo City pilots 1st quarter nationwide quake drill

Iloilo City has been chosen as pilot area for this year’s 1st Quarter Nationwide Simultaneous Earthquake Drill (NSED).

City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) head Donna Magno said the earthquake drill set on Feb. 21 primarily aims to raise the public’s awareness on earthquake preparedness.

According to her, no less than the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs), during a national coordination meeting, that suggested the city to be the pilot area.

Phivolcs cited the powerful earthquake called “Lady Caycay” that hit Panay Island on Jan. 25, 1948.

Ang big events daan like that may recurring period [for every 70 to 100 years] so dapat tutukan gid na kung ano ang natabo sa past so that we can prepare for possible scenario like Lady Caycay,” Magno said.

Lady Caycay destroyed more than 50 churches in Panay, including the Jaro Cathedral (Church of St. Elizabeth of Hungary).

Magno said the drill would also showcase what Iloilo has in terms of disaster preparedness.

The drill will be simultaneously conducted in the following areas: Barangay Sto. Niño Sur in Arevalo district, SM City,  Iloilo Business Park, Iloilo Mission Hospital, and Iloilo City Hall.

Magno said these areas would highlight the relationship among concerned sectors in times of disasters.

Between 5,000 to 8,000 people are expected to join the drill.

Last Jan. 31, the city government hosted the  second coordination meeting for the nationwide drill at the Ker Building.

In his welcome message, Office of the Civil Defense (OCD-6) Regional Director Jose Roberto Nuñez underscored the importance of disaster preparedness.

He said preparedness can save lives and mitigate the impact of disasters.IMT