Friday, November 20, 2009

Center for Excellence Supports Disaster Response Exercise in Fiji

Staff from the Hawaii-based Center for Excellence in Disaster Management and Humanitarian Assistance (COE) joined local government and military officials, representatives from United Nations organizations, non-governmental organizations and a number of diplomatic missions Nov. 17-20 during a U.S. Embassy-hosted disaster management exercise in Fiji.

“The exercise and training is based on real-life situations encountered during and after natural disasters in Fiji”, said Ambassador Steven McGann, U.S. Ambassador to Fiji. “The idea for this kind of intensive training was borne out of our assessment of Fiji’s disaster preparedness mechanisms in the aftermath of the devastating floods of January this year.”

The four-day tabletop exercise was based on real-world scenarios and designed to enhance coordination and disaster response capabilities, which Ambassador McGann noted in a Fiji Times article as being a U.S. priority.

Lt. Gen. (Ret) John F. Goodman, COE’s director, gave the keynote address to kick off the exercise (see Fiji TV coverage below), which was led by his staff and also included U.S. representatives from the Coast Guard and Pacific Tsunami Warning Center. The diplomatic missions of China, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, United Kingdom, Papua New Guinea and France also took part.

COE is a direct reporting unit to Pacific Command and principal agency to promote disaster preparedness and societal resiliency in the Asia-Pacific region. COE was established by the US Congress in 1994. As part of its mandate, COE facilitates education and training in disaster preparedness, consequence management and health security to develop domestic, foreign and international capability and capacity.

1 comment:

nick said...

Its really a good step. this type of disaster preparedness activity which is based on real life is very useful for peoples to be prepare for any type of emergency or disaster.

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