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DPWH updates emergency preparedness, response program

QUEZON CITY, (PIA) -- The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) has updated its emergency and response program to further fine-tune operations during earthquakes and other calamities, integrating the World Bank-funded Philippines Seismic Risk Reduction and Resilience Project (PSRRRP) into the agency’s Emergency Preparedness and Response Program.

Public and Works and Highways Secretary Manuel M. Bonoan, through Department Order No. 113 issued on September 6, 2023, approved the policy guidelines to incorporate the emergency equipment components of PSRRP to Department Order No. 87, s. 2018 entitled “The ‘Big One’ Earthquake Preparedness Program” also known as the Equipment Positioning and Mobilization Contingency Plan.

Secretary Bonoan, citing a report from DPWH Senior Undersecretary Emil K. Sadain and Bureau of Equipment (BOE) Director Toribio Noel L. Ilao, said that the PSRRRP Component 2 is financing the capacity requirement of the Department’s emergency response equipment for transport, mobility restoration (ERETMR), pursuant to Oplan Metro Yakal Plus (OMYP) or the Metro Manila Earthquake Contingency Plan, and the Metropolitan Manila Earthquake Impact Reduction Study (MMEIRS).

With about 120 new equipment to be added to the existing ERETMR assets of the DPWH across the country, this will not only enhance the capacity to respond in case of a potentially catastrophic earthquake happening in Greater Metro Manila Area but also other natural hazards nationwide,” said Bonoan.

Also incorporated in the new guidelines is the 5-year DPWH funding for the operation and maintenance of ERETMR amounting to P461.16 million, which is stipulated as the Government of the Philippines (GOP) counterpart fund in the PSRRRP. It will cover the 5-year operation and maintenance of ERETMR materials, supplies, or parts, and labor cost.

According to DPWH, the updated policy designates the department’s Unified Project Management Office – Buildings and Special Projects Management Cluster (UPMO-BSPMC) as the project implementing unit (PIU) of the PSRRRP, handling the procurement of ERETMR, as well as funding management and monitoring of equipment assets.

Meanwhile, the technical specifications review, inspection, testing, acceptance, assignment, and delivery of ERETMR to the DPWH Regional Offices (ROs) and District Engineering Offices (DEOs), including the recruitment and training of operators will be under the supervision of the DPWH-BOE. (DPWH/PIA-NCR)

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Jimmyley Guzman

Information Officer III

National Capital Region

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