A good plan for disaster management is necessary in abating the risk of occurrence of disasters. It involves first of all identifying possible disaster that may occur. Disasters may be categorized into natural, accidental and intentional. In coming up with the plan possible disasters under the aforementioned categories were considered. The FEMA website identifies possible natural disasters that may occur in a region as floods, hurricanes thunderstorms, fires, terrorism, which includes explosions among others. It further seeks to notify the citizens on possible ways in which citizens may salvage themselves from such occurrences. For the case of IUB possible natural disasters that may occur include earthquakes. For the accidental disasters, looking at the nature of machinery and equipments being used it is possible to have disasters resulting from fires that may come up for instance as a result of explosions in the laboratory out of carelessness by the students. However, we can not ignore the risk of intentional disasters that may be caused by the student themselves. An example of such disasters is campus shootouts. This may arise as a result of mishaps and misunderstanding by students especially under the influence of drugs. These are some of the disaster planned for noting that they have also been identified as possible risks by the FEMA. This was provided to the public in 2004 to provide up to date disaster preparedness information.
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Risk assessment refers to the careful examination of what could cause harm o people. This is aimed at determining whether appropriate plan has been made to counter such occurrences. The house and safety executive (HSE) asserts the importance of making a prior assessment of possible risks in order to make prior arrangement for controlling the risks. It is important to note that IUB lies in an earthquake prone region. Earthquakes are natural disaster and it is not possible to determine when they might occur. In case of occurrence they come with adverse impacts. Some of the impacts include destruction of structures. This will hitherto lead to deaths and more so destruction of infrastructure and communication. Fires too cannot be ignored, this is bearing in mind that the school has laboratories and even eateries. There may be explosions from the labs or even electric careless use may result to fires in the institutions. In case of fires a lot of property may be destroyed in the fires, this is without forgetting that such fires may also lead to deaths and injuries resulting from ensuing stampede.
It is important to note the vulnerability and capacity analysis of the disaster in question. This involves looking at possible impacts or problems that may arise from the disaster. Capacity and vulnerability analysis is also one of the frameworks for NGOs to design and evaluate projects. One of the NGOs the Benfield Grieg hazard research centre and the Red Cross identifies three levels of vulnerability. This includes physical/material impacts, school/organizational vulnerability and motivational/attitudinal vulnerabilities. For the case of an earthquake the threats that are envisaged include total collapse of buildings. This will bring about adverse impacts on the school. Among the adverse effects include total disruption of communication. This implies that even in the case of some victims being held up by the rubbles retrieving them will be such a hard task. This is not forgetting that many people and students will be displaced as a result of this. For the case of fires in the institution much may be affected. In this case we might have total disruption of electricity in the school for a long period. Lack of electricity implies lack of water since it is the electricity that is used for pumping water. Lack of water on the other side may end up bringing diseases that result from unhygienic conditions for instance cholera. We thus note that a single disaster will end up following a vicious cycle in which students will be adversely affected and more so the day to day running of the school's activities.
The specific plan of action is essentially aimed at a prior course of action in case of occurrence of a disaster. From the American Red cross web based communications, we note that disasters by definition are initially confusing and chaotic. In this case therefore an organized course of action is essential to abate or control the risk that may occur as a result of the disasters. In coming up with specific plan of action it is important to consider the situation in line with the National Disaster Management Information Systems (DMIS). After making a clear assessment the risks and conducting vulnerability access of the threats. It will be clear on the gravity of the mishap expected. In this case therefore, the plan will involve creation of awareness and warning posters in the school environment. For instance, it is appropriate to come up with posters sensitizing students on the importance of avoiding risks that may bring about fires. The plan should further assess the demographic distribution in the school. This implies that the number of students and staff and people found in the institution should be established. This is intended to make or account for each and every individual in case of a threat. From this data even if there is an evacuation after an earthquake it will be possible to determine the number of victims and more so it will be able to make rescue where possible since the demographies will provide a basis for accountability. The plan further demands that the infrastructure, the lifelines and critical facilities are put up to standard. This implies that, in case of fires the student health facility should be able to offer adequate attention to victims. In line with this it should be able to offer first aid and have means of proper referral for serious injuries.
The Red Cross society insists on proper logistics and transportation routes to be established in case of disaster. This implies therefore, that in the plan it's important to include proper transportation avenues and means for the victims in case of occurrence of a threat. It means therefore that in case of a fire, it is recommended that adequate escape or fire exits should be put in place. FEMA has been a good source of insight over the same .in the FEMA website, information is provided to the citizens, asking them to be aware of the ways in which they can response to emergencies. In this case therefore in the plan it is required that everyone is made aware of escape routes that they may use in case of a fire breakout. Human resource and material response plan is essential in the plan. This implies that in the plan it is important to determine who will be involved in case of occurrence of the thereat. In case of a fire, the school should have adequate personnel for dealing with the victims. First aid education needs to e emphasized. This will thus enable the student body with help of the scouts to offer adequate support to fellow students in case of a threat occurring. Finally, it is important to make sure that communication facilities are put up everywhere in the compound. This can be done through posters which sensitize students on disaster preparedness. This is the same way in which FEMA website offers adequate information for citizens on disaster preparedness and management. The Red Cross team in their document on disaster response web based communications 2009; recognize the fact that communication in the midst of a disaster is a great challenge. This is in the fact that it is a time when you need to receive much information and still receive information from a wide audience. This therefore implies that there is need to make communication channels to be smooth.
For mitigation purposes it is important to recognize the need for proper mitigation. For the case of property damage, there is need to make proper and prior insurance plans for compensation. The same case applies for fires. However, in the case of fires there is a need to supply enough fire extinguishers around the school. This means that in case of fire the student body will also be involved in salvaging the situation and hence make it easy to reduce the extent of damage. Proper communication will ensure that in case of a thereat quick medication for instance getting ambulances will be necessitated and hence save lives.
In conclusion therefore, there is need for adequate disaster preparedness. This will go a long way in mitigation of injuries deaths or even damage of property in the event of a threat. The plan therefore calls for assessment of threats and there vulnerability, looking at the demographics and planning for them, developing proper infrastructure and critical facilities, proper transportation and logistics, having adequate human and material resource on standby and developing proper communication. This is in line with the DMIS. IUB can be at the fore front in controlling and mitigation in a number of ways. There should be a common and compulsory unit where students are taught issues on disaster management and first aid. The school website should also play a great role in this by sensitizing on proper way of conducts to reduce some risks for instance fire. Posters around the school can also play a great role in sensitizing students on the issue of safety in school. IUB should further offer clear communication channels with the school and even other relevant support services that may be available for the students in case of occurrence of the risks. This will go a long way in making IUB a safe place and mitigating dangers that may arise from occurrence of disasters.
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