TAGUM CITY, Davao del Norte (PIA) -- This city became the pilot area for the community-based national simultaneous earthquake drill (NSED) in Davao Region.
The Office of the Civil Defense in Davao Region (OCD-11) led member agencies of the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (RDRRMC) in running the 3rd Quarter NSED at Purok 8, Barangay San Miguel, Tagum City on Thursday, August 8.
Although San Miguel was most at risk of flood, the village was chosen as the test site for the community-based earthquake drill because OCD-11 Regional Director Luis Manuel Ochotorena said he was interested on how the residents would execute their evacuation plan.
In giving priority to Tagum City as the site of the 3rd quarter NSED, OCD-11 noted Tagum as the "most populous component city in Mindanao." Tagum's population is placed at 259,444, according to the 2015 census.
Supported by the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office of Davao del Norte, the NSED drew the presence of Governor Edwin I. Jubahib who manifested support for the national government initiatives especially regarding risk reduction management.
In an interview, Jubahib said the provincial government already had the necessary equipment, and staff to provide disaster response, and the system had already been put in place.
Basing on the meetings he had with fellow governors, he said the provincial government could access the assistance of the League of Provincial Governors during calamities "just like what happened to Batanes" when the Philippines' northernmost province was hit by a strong earthquake.
On the other hand, CDRRM officer Lecrecio Diuda, speaking for Tagum City Mayor Allan Rellon, urged his constituents to equip themselves with knowledge on how to adapt and respond to changing times and on how to brace themselves during disaster.
"Laging Tandaan, Lamang ang May Alam," Diuda said.
He cautioned them from panic noting such reaction would result in more damage and casualty while he pointed out the need to seriously take the drill as an exercise on how to respond on might possible happen during onset of natural calamity such as earthquake.
On the other hand, Ochotorena regarded as "receptive" the way local government executives were taking NSED activities, noting their high interest "to know what to do during calamity so they can keep their constituents safe at all times."
RDRRMC and OCD-11 conducted the 2019 1st Quarter NSED in Mintal Davao City while the 2nd Quarter NSED was held in Digos City. (PIA-11)