An online training course for Vietnam’s localities to make plans for natural disaster prevention, response and mitigation was held on July 15.
The event was jointly organized by the General Department of Disaster Prevention and Control under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) in Vietnam.
Last year, Vietnam was hit by 14 storms, a depression, 120 flash floods and landslides, 90 earthquakes, and other natural disasters, according to Deputy Director of the General Department of Disaster Prevention and Control Nguyen Van Tien.
Deputy Director of the General Department of Disaster Prevention and Control Nguyen Van Tien speaks at the event. Photo: Hanoimoi
Natural disasters resulted in 357 fatalities and economic losses of US$1.73 billion, Tien said, adding that it is forecast flash floods will occur earlier than normal. Furthermore, the stormy season this year will see approximately 12 to 14 storms and tropical depressions, five or seven of which may impact the mainland.
In order to ensure a methodical and effective response, Tien proposed that authorities at all levels and standing offices of committees for natural disaster prevention, search, and rescue in 63 provinces and cities keep taking proactive measures.
“The Standing Office of the Central Steering Committee for Natural Disaster Prevention and Control will also continue to provide support and advise on technical solutions for localities in disaster prevention, response, and mitigation to the possible dual crisis of natural disasters and the Covid-19 pandemic this year,” Tien said.
Talking at the training session, UNICEF Vietnam's expert on disaster risk reduction, Ly Phat Viet Linh, stressed that natural disasters and the impact of climate change have become a double burden, exacerbating the impact of Covid-19 on households, especially households with children in vulnerable groups.
“According to experts in disaster risk reduction from UNICEF Vietnam, it is necessary to pay attention to disaster risk reduction and careful preparation to deal with natural disasters,” Linh said.
The stormy season following the Covid-19 pandemic would create numerous difficulties in supporting people to reach safe places in cases of natural disasters; therefore, drills for management of natural disasters and proactive responses are important, Linh noted.