Disaster preparedness

MANILA, Philippines - THE country should continue to maintain and improve its disaster preparedness capability in the wake of the devastating 8.9 quake and tsunami that devastated nearby Japan.

Nothing beats being prepared - to minimize deaths and destruction to property.

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Likewise, the government should be wary about reviving the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant in the wake of the nuclear reactor explosion north of Tokyo, feared to have killed 1,300 persons plus in a disastrous meltdown.

Killer-radiation reminds us of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Whew!

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Concerned government agencies should also prepare better for the speedy evacuation of our overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) from areas shaken by both natural disasters and man-made troubles.

Parens patria. Greater protection and assistance to troubled citizens wherever they may be.

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"We need to have a thorough audit of what expertise and logistics the agencies under the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) have so we can enhance, augment, and close whatever gaps are there in relation to our coping response and capability in the event of a natural disaster such as a strong earthquake," urges Sen. Francis Escudero.

A comprehensive review and thorough preparations are in order in the wake of the Japan and "Ondoy" disasters. As we often wish: "Walang diskarel."

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The senator points out that based on a JICA study, Metro Manila is not prepared to deal with a 7.2-magnitude earthquake, given its old structures and considering its limited resources.

Disasters are for real. Time to open our eyes to reality.

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Phivolcs Director Renato Solidum adds that a 7.2- magnitude earthquake could devastate 40 percent of residential areas and 14 percent of high rise buildings in Metro Manila.

A crumbling Metro plus a burning inferno? Que horror!

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Solidum reveals that the so-called Marikina fault line even runs from Sierra Madre through Bulacan, Rodriguez, Rizal, Quezon City, the eastern side of Metro Manila, including Pasig, Taguig, Muntinlupa, San Pedro and Sta. Rosa, Laguna and ends in Carmona, Cavite.

It's a long fault line that likewise requires long disaster preparations on our part. And it's better for us to prepare for all types of calamities and disasters.

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