#BaguioCityShakeDrill: City of Pines prepares for 'The Big One'
MANILA, Philippines - Nearly 26 years ago, a major earthquake devastated Baguio City.
The July 16, 1990 earthquake left 1,283 dead, 2,786 injured, and 321 missing in Central and Northern Luzon. It also damaged over 100,000 houses in the same area.
In Baguio City, 28 buildings collapsed, including iconic hotels like the Hyatt Terraces, Baguio Park, and Baguio Hilltop. (READ: Remembering the 1990 Luzon Earthquake)
Has the city learned from that tragic experience? Are residents prepared if disaster stikes?
These are the questions that the Office of Civil Defense - Cordillera Autonomous Region (OCD-CAR), in partnersfhip with the Baguio City Government, intends to answer through the #BaguioCityShakeDrill, their first citywide earthquake drill.
A similar preparedness exercise was conducted by the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) in 2015. (READ: FAQ: What's #MMshakedrill and how can you participate?)
Alertness and preparedness
#BaguioCityShakeDrill will simulate the impact of a 7.2-magnitude earthquake, aiming to promote alertness and preparedness. It will also assess the evacuation plans and procedures of various sectors and organizations in the city. (READ: Faith and science: Lessons from the 1990 Luzon earthquake)
The OCD in the region has been very active in promoting the event via social media, inviting residents of Baguio to participate.
Residents are urged to practice the "Duck, Cover, and Hold" exercise for a few minutes before evacuating in accordance with established procedures.
The Melvin Jones Football Grounds and Session Road will serve as evacuation sites in the central business district. All 128 barangays in Baguio City, along with their respective disaster committees, are expected to take an active part in the drill.
Major search and rescue exercises will be conducted at the following locations:
- SM City Baguio
- Baguio Country Club
- PEZA Cordillera
- Philippine Military Academy
- Saint Louis University
- University of the Cordilleras
MovePH, Rappler's citizen journalism and civic engagement arm, in partnership with OCD-CAR, is participating in this event by conducting an Agos workshop designed to help affected sectors better communicate critical information during a crisis. It will be held on March 23, Wednesday, at the University of the Cordilleras in Baguio City.
By teaching students, volunteers, responders, and government officials the importance of being information advocates, as well as how to report actionable information via the Agos Alert Map, MovePH and Agos aims to increase everyone's preparedness and help promote #ZeroCasualty.
Interested in becoming an information advocate? Sign up here! - Rappler.com