Thousands ‘evacuate’ in earthquake drill PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 20 March 2014 11:26

Beng asks ZCSPC students  to  have presence of mind

As soon as the siren rang out to warn of an earthquake, thousands of students including the faculty and non-teaching personnel of the Zamboanga City State Polytechnic College (ZCSPC) rushed out of their rooms in an orderly fashion and gathered themselves for safety at the open field yesterday morning.

That was the first quarter nationwide Simultaneous Earthquake Drill (SED) initiated by the Office of the Civil Defense (OCD) headed by Regional Director Adriano Fuego with the ZCSPC as the lead school. The exercise was aimed at instilling spontaneity and precision among students in responding to natural disaster like earthquake.

Mayor Beng Climaco, who joined the drill together with ZCSPC President Dr. Nora Ponce, reminded students and faculty to react and act on disasters using God’s given wisdom— the presence of mind.

“A lot of people worldwide are suffering from the extreme weather condition brought about by Climate Change, and we should not take it lightly,” Climaco said, adding that even Zamboanga City has not been spared of natural and man-made calamities from storm surge, flashflood, landslides, fires to armed conflict. “Soon, we will be experiencing a dry spell and God forbid an earthquake.”

She said the protection of the city depends on every resident “because it is everybody’s responsibility to be able to mitigate, prevent and respond to disasters.”

“Promise me to react and act on any emergencies with the presence of mind,” she urged the ZCSPC students and faculty.

Dr. Ponce, on the other hand, thanked the OCP for choosing the ZCSPC as the lead school for SED, stressing that the activity has provided them with the opportunity to show responsiveness as people in ensuring the security of the place.

“This marks the day of instilling and evaluating ones awareness on the actions to be taken in the midst of various uncertainties and circumstances,” Ponce said in her welcome remarks.

Director Fuego, for his part warned of the possibilities that Zamboanga City might be struck by earthquake as it is located within the Pacific Ring of Fire and along the typhoon belt as well.

According to him, the Zamboanga Peninsula is bounded by three earthquake generators—the Sulu trench, the Cotabato trench and the MFS, thus the need for the drill.

“Don’t panic and use your common sense when you respond to disasters,” he told the students.— Vic Larato

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 March 2014 11:30