MANILA, Philippines – On July 30, the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) will conduct the first-ever Metrowide Earthquake Drill. Rappler’s Project Agos is the social media and information campaign platform for the exercise dubbed #MMShakeDrill. (READ: How to use social media when the Big One hits Metro Manila)
All 17 local government units (LGUs) in Metro Manila will participate in the drill, which hopes to prepare residents for the “Big One” – the 7.2-magnitude earthquake predicted to hit Metro Manila. (READ: 57 subdivisions, villages traversed by West Valley Fault)
To give the public an idea about the drill, MMDA provided answers to the following frequently asked questions (FAQ):
What is the Metro Manila Shakedrill?
The Metro Manila Shakedrill is the first metro-wide earthquake drill. It aims to promote a culture of preparedness among Metro Manilans in the event of a 7.2 magnitude earthquake due to the movement of the West Valley Fault.
When will the Shakedrill be conducted?
The Shakedrill will be conducted on July 30, Thursday, from 10:30 am to 11:30 am in the entire Metro Manila.
Pasig City will conduct its own nighttime drill in the Ortigas Business District from 8 pm to 9:30 pm.
Who should participate in the Shakedrill?
Everyone in Metro Manila is encouraged to participate in the drill, whether they are at home, at work, in school, or even on the road. Since the Shakedrill is designed to simulate an unexpected 7.2 magnitude earthquake, everyone will be “affected” wherever they are.
The Metro Manila Shakedrill has been coordinated with the barangays, government agencies, hospitals, businesses, schools, BPOs, mall operators, and the religious sectors in order to ensure multisector participation.
How do we know if the drill is starting?
At 10:30 am, radio stations will sound off the earthquake alert which will signal the start of the drill.
Depending on where you are, your company, school, or institution may also sound off their own alerts and bells through their Public Announcement (PA) Systems.
MMDA’s social media accounts will also send a notification when the drill starts.
What should we do at 10:30 am?
If you are at the office, school or other buildings, once the signal starts at 10:30 am, perform the Drop, Cover, and Hold position for 45 seconds. (WATCH: Phivolcs Director Dr Renato Solidum shows how to duck, cover, and hold)
After that, evacuate your building and make sure to clear any obstructions in your pathway. Follow the protocols as prescribed by the Earthquake Preparedness Guideline pamphlets (available at www.metromanilashakedrill.com) for each type of sector. The specific procedures should be implemented by your office, school, place of worship, etc. If you are in a vehicle, avoid structures likely to fall, such as billboards and power lines.
What if we’re at home at 10:30 am?
If you are at home, we encourage you to perform the Drop, Cover, and Hold position for 45 seconds as well. You don’t have to evacuate your house. Just know where the nearest barangay evacuation center is located. Have your emergency bag on hand with whistles. Prepare your family evacuation procedure. Check possible causes of fires like LPG tanks. Monitor the ongoing Shakedrill within your neighborhood. Visualize and know where your family members are, and check your house surroundings for cracks and structural defects.
Where should we go after we duck, cover, and hold?
If you’re at home, you don’t need to evacuate. For members of schools, offices, and institutions, carefully evacuate building and proceed to the evacuation areas as prescribed by your local barangays.
What if I’m on the road at 10:30 am?
The MMDA traffic constables will signal the start of the Shakedrill on our major roads by holding up EARTHQUAKE DRILL signs. All vehicles are expected to stop for 45 seconds, except for vehicles on and below flyovers and tunnels which need to keep moving to avoid the structures.
Traffic lights along the major roads will be on FLASHING MODE for 45 seconds as well.
Are public services going to be disrupted on July 30?
No, all public services will be operational on July 30. The point of the Shakedrill is to simulate the earthquake on a normal day, where people will be where they normally are. Only the 10:30 am to 11:30 am window hour will be dedicated to the Shakedrill.
How about the trains?
The MRT and LRT lines will be operational during the Shakedrill.
But in a real earthquake situation, train commuters should follow these tips and instructions. (READ: Earthquake tips for train commuters)
Will the power and telephone lines be cut off?
No. There will be no metro-wide disruption of power or communication lines. It is upon the discretion of your individual companies, schools, or barangays if they will simulate these circumstances in your respective areas.
What will emergency response teams be doing during the drill?
A composite team of MMDA, MMDRRMC, PNP, AFP, and the local DRRMOs of LGUs will be setting up the following evacuation sites and staging simulated earthquake response scenarios at the following areas:
10:30 am to 11:30 am (July 30, 2015) – Main Evacuation Areas
- Veterans Golf Course – Hospital / Medical Triage
- Intramuros Golf Course – Fire Suppression
- LRT 2 / Santolan Depot – Collapsed Structure
- Villamor Golf Course -Debris Clearing
- Eastwood Center – Medical Evacuation
- Ayala Center, Makati – High Ladder Evacuation
- Roxas Blvd., Rajah Sulayman Arena – Seaborne Evacuation
- Megamall Area – Medical Evacuation
- Pasig River Ferry System – Medical Evacuation (to Intramuros Golf Course)
An integrated Field Command Center (FCC) will be set up along the ASEANA Macapagal Blvd Area in Pasay City, where there will also be Management of the Dead (MOD) activities. This will be linked up with the AFP headquarters in Camp Aguinaldo to monitor all activities.
Do we need to proceed to the evacuation areas?
You don’t have to proceed to our quadrant evacuation areas. Just know their locations on how to get there in case there are fires and strong aftershocks during a real earthquake.
For the Shakedrill, it is recommended to first proceed to your local barangay’s evacuation area.
Can I volunteer in the evacuation areas?
Yes. Registration areas will be designated for each sector for volunteers and assignment of responsibilities.
How can I encourage others to participate in the Shakedrill?
You can promote the Shakedrill through your social media accounts by using #MMShakeDrill and sharing your preparations and experiences.
MovePH, Rappler’s civic engagement arm, will help the MMDA crowdsource earthquake drill efforts and initiatives from the public and the private sector. These will be plotted on the Project Agos Alert Map, which already incorporated the MMDA’s hazard maps for Metro Manila. Rappler has also created videos and stories informing the public on what to do during earthquakes.
As a partner of MMDA, Rappler’s Project Agos will also participate in all activities related to the drill for coverage and documentation.
Local government units and other partners of MMDA are also encouraged to use the Project Agos platform for information updates and public engagement for the earthquake drill.
Launched in September 2013, Project Agos is a collaborative platform that harnesses technology and social media in information dissemination before, during, and after disasters. (READ: #ProjectAgos: One-stop shop for climate change) It combines top-down government action with bottom-up civic engagement in all the phases of a disaster. – Rappler.com