Phuket Vice Governor Vikrom Jakthee chaired the opening of the ‘Table Top Exercise TTX’, at the Region 18 Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Center in Phuket Town yesterday (Aug 26).
The two-day workshop, which concludes today (Aug 27), comes after a week of intermittent heavy downpours causing minor flooding in isolated areas across Phuket.
“Local government organisation and related agencies have surveyed the canals and dredged weeds and garbage blocking waterways to prepare for flash floods to ensure efficient drainage during the rainy season,” Vice Governor Vikrom said.
“We need to prepare flood disaster response plans to respond to flood situations under COVID-19 conditions,” he added.
Udomphon Kan, chief of the Phuket Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Office (DDPM Phuket), said that the Meteorological Department had reported greater than average for the first half of the rainy season so far this year, starting on May 15. However, he added that in the second half of the rainy season, the amount and the distribution of rain will return to normal.
Regardless, he noted, “In some periods there will be heavy to very heavy rain for several days which may cause flash floods and wild water flows in many areas. The rainy season in upper Thailand will end around mid-October.
“With the Southern Thailand area still experiencing a COVID-19 epidemic, this may result in the need to have a complex disaster management response plan.”
During the workshop, emphasis is placed on the practice of testing understanding of the roles and missions of relevant agencies, Mr Udomphon said.
“To integrate the implementation of the Phuket Flood Response Plan and testing the readiness of personnel, location, resources, coordination and communication as well as connecting via a teleconference system between the provincial incident command center district incident command center Emergency Operations Center of Local Administrative Organizations and related agencies in accordance with the guidelines of the Incident Command System,” he added.
“The Table Top Exercise (TTX) format will allow the trainees to transfer their knowledge to all operators so they can prepare and practice regularly, and take action immediately when disaster strikes so they can help alleviate people’s suffering effectively,” Mr Udomphon said.