JIS News

The Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM) will observe Earthquake Awareness Week from January 9-15, 2010, under the theme: ‘Learn, Plan, Prepare…the next big quake could be near!’
Several activities have been planned by ODPEM to mark the Week, which is aimed at increasing the general awareness of the Jamaican public to the importance of preparing for an earthquake.
The events will begin with a National Church Service to be held on Saturday, January 9, at the Andrews Memorial Seventh-day Adventist Church, 27 Hope Road, Kingston 10, starting at 11:00 a.m. The service will be aired live on Nationwide Radio and carried delayed on RJR 94FM. This event will be followed by regional church services, arranged by the ODPEM’s regional disaster co-ordinators, at various churches islandwide on Sunday, January 10.
The disaster management body will publish Earthquake Awareness Week 2010 supplements in the Jamaica Observer, on Monday, January 11, and in the Gleaner on January 12. The latter publication is significant to the Gleaner, which survived the 1907 Earthquake and subsequent fire that destroyed several businesses in Kingston and elsewhere. Also, ODPEM will host a ‘Tsunamis Workshop for the Tourism Sector’ on January 11 at the Bahia Principe Hotel, in St. Ann. The workshop will place emphasis on Disaster Risk Management of the hotels located in costal zones vulnerable to tsunamis. The workshop will also focus on training participants managing cultural heritage sites that could possibly be at risk.
Earthquake Awareness Day in Schools, an annual hazard awareness day, which was created specifically to better prepare the nation’s children, through schools, for an earthquake, will be observed on January 13. Schools are encouraged to involve their students in earthquake awareness activities, such as creating original items in song, dance, drama and poetry to express themselves about their vulnerabilities to earthquakes. ODPEM’s major event for this day is the annual Earthquake Awareness Week Open Day, which will take place at the Old Naval Hospital in Port Royal. Once the ‘richest and wickedest city in the World’, Port Royal survived the Great Earthquake on June 7, 1692.
The activities for the day will feature exhibits from several partner agencies and companies, and talks given by ODPEM and several of its partner agencies, such as the Earthquake Unit and the Jamaica Fire Brigade.
The ODPEM’s Earthquake Awareness Day in Businesses, an annual hazard awareness day, specifically targets the earthquake preparedness needs of businesses. This day will be observed on January 14. On this day, the ODPEM encourages businesses to take time out to evaluate their level of preparedness and to ensure that staff and clients alike are aware of the necessary earthquake preparedness measures. The activities on this day will include earthquake drills and earthquake hazard hunts. Businesses are encouraged to contact the ODPEM about earthquake preparedness talks and presentations to their staff by the ODPEM Training Department.

Skip to content