NDRRMC on blue alert for Holy Week

MANILA — The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) will be on “blue alert” in line with the country’s observance of Holy Week.

NDRRMC Executive Director Alexander Pama said the alert status, which requires half of the agency’s personnel to be ready for contingencies, would be in place on Holy Wednesday.

With this, the NDRRMC has activated its “Operation Semana Santa” which involves the coordination of agencies like the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC), Department of Health (DoH), Department of Interior and Local Government, Philippine National Police (PNP) and Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

Member-agencies of the NDRRMC met Monday to discuss preparedness plans for the expected exodus of travelers to the provinces for the Lenten season.

DOTC will set up help desks in major transport terminal, monitoring in NAIA terminals and intesify security measures against unlawful acts.

Meanwhile, the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines and airport authorities would provide additional seats around terminals for the convenience of passengers.

Other measures to be implemented include random airport facility inspections and drug and alcohol testing of flight crew working for commercial operators.

The Philippine National Police (PNP) has been tasked to deploy road safety marshals along main roads and set-up assistance desks in crowded places.

Help desks will be established in various parts of the country to help passengers. Field reports will be forwarded to the NDRRMC Operations Center in Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City.

Pama stressed the importance of encouraging vigilance and preparedness to all the citizens as go on their usual activities for the Lenten season.

”The need to secure their homes from theft and fire, vehicles check-ups to avoid road accidents as well as awareness on the emergency number that they contact when in need,” Pama noted.

Motorists and the general public can also call the agency’s trunkline 911-5061 to 64 for updates and request for assistance while the NDRRMC’s Facebook (NDRRMC OpCen) and Twitter account (ndrrmc_Opcen) will also be open during the Holy Week to respond to inquiries. PNA/northboundasia.com