UNDP and Deutsche Post DHL launch training on NAIA airport preparedness for humanitarian disasters
Pasay City, 27 May 2013 – The United Nations Development Programme and Deutsche Post DHL launched today at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport a training programme that seeks to boost the preparedness of airports to respond to humanitarian disasters.
Hosted by the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA), the Get Airports Ready for Disaster (GARD) training takes place from today until May 30, and gathers key airport management and disaster response personnel who will undertake a preparedness assessment of Terminals 1 and 2.
GARD is based on the premise that airports are critical in ensuring that when disasters strike, the delivery of relief assistance is executed efficiently so that it reaches the affected communities quickly. In times of calamity, airports must be adequately prepared to absorb the sudden influx of relief goods from other parts of the country and abroad.
Over 30 participants attended the first day of the training, majority of whom are key senior personnel involved in the management and operations of NAIA. Also in the training are delegates from the Davao International Airport, which absorbed the bulk of relief goods delivered to Mindanao for victims of Typhoon Pablo in December 2012.
“The Philippines is one of the countries most vulnerable to the effects of climate change and increasingly frequent natural disasters. Tropical Storm Sendong struck in December 2011 and only a year later came the deadly Typhoon Pablo. The Philippines is also susceptible to earthquakes and volcanic eruptions due to its location in the Pacific Ring of Fire. These often have devastating effects on the economy and the life of the Filipinos,” said UNDP Country Director Toshihiro Tanaka in the opening ceremony.
“The need to always intensify our preparedness for the next disaster and to develop resilience is critical. UNDP is pleased to collaborate with Deutsche Post DHL and MIAA in this disaster preparedness effort,” he added.
GARD also includes participants from agencies involved in airport management and disaster response such as the Department of Transportation and Communications, National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, Philippine Air Force, and the Joint Oil Companies Aviation Fuel Storage Plant.
Over the next three days, participants will conduct a preparedness assessment of the operations of NAIA Terminals 1 and 2 using the GARD methodology. The assessment will look into different areas such as cargo, utilities, customs procedures, air traffic control and security, and evaluate the terminals’ preparedness to quickly adjust to crisis scenarios.
From the assessment, participants will formulate recommendations and come up with the Airport Surge Capacity Assessment Report. The report will be submitted to the management of MIAA for appropriate action.
Globally, UNDP administers the GARD project, leads coordination with national partners and provides the funds for training costs, while Deutsche Post DHL taps its pool of airport and aviation experts to conduct the training as part of its corporate social responsibility programme. The GARD training programme is hosted by MIAA in the Philippines.
Since 2009, GARD has been implemented in disaster-prone countries such as Bangladesh, Indonesia, Nepal, Lebanon, Turkey, Armenia and El Salvador. In 2013, the training programme is being rolled out in the Philippines.
Anthony de la Cruz
Phone: (632) 9010280