Earthquake awareness crucial for natural disaster mitigation

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  • Myanmar is exposed to multiple natural hazards including cyclones, earthquakes, floods and fire, all of which have caused catastrophic disasters.
    Owing to the aftermaths of global warming, the effect of climate change can be seen progressively in the world. Myanmar has faced natural disasters in the past which resulted in many deaths and damage. Due to the threats of these natural disasters, we should take into consideration the geographical location of our country in preparing for the future.
    We should not neglect the danger of earthquakes and tsunamis, which can claim many lives. Geographically, Myanmar is prone to earthquakes as it is located on major fault lines. The country witnessed devastating earthquakes in the recent past, which led to loss of life, assets, livelihoods and heritage buildings.
    According to the warnings of seismologists and geologists, most of the regions in the country are located along the earthquake fault lines, where the danger of earthquakes exists.
    People who live in the coastal areas need to be aware of the danger of tsunamis that could occur along with an earthquake. But it is still difficult to predict when an earthquake will occur and how much damage it could cause.
    Whenever unpredictable disasters occur, there will be damage, loss of life and casualties, as a rule. Though physical damage can be seen easily, other damages such as health, education and cultural heritages also need to be calculated.
    To be on the safe side, efforts should be made to give early warnings to the public so that they can be able to take necessary precautions for the impending disaster.
    As for the Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement, concerted efforts are being made to mitigate the disaster risks and take systematic preparedness measures for the disasters which can occur from time to time in the country. It is crucial to undertake quick and effective activities for relief and support during the disaster.
    Moreover, plans should be under way to lay down systematic measures and procedures at the National, State/Region, District, Township, Wards and Village Tract levels for Disaster Management.
    Preparedness and mitigation are an integral part of the development plans which should include prior arrangements for relief, rehabilitation and reconstruction activities when the next natural disaster occurs.
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