In the wake of the devastating 2013 Typhoon Haiayan, the Philippines has implemented an integrated disaster management and communications solution, to help mitigate risk and improve response planning in the wake of natural disasters.
Immediately following the typhoon, IBM donated the Philippine government an Impact Grant of technology and services, which included an Intelligent Operations Centre and Integrated Communications Centre for emergency management to facilitate better better and more coordinated disaster management efforts .
The new system was up and running just two weeks after the typhoon, enabling all agencies and first responders communicate, regardless of equipment or method.
The disaster operations centre provides the Philippines Department of Science & Technology and its reporting agencies an integrated, near-real-time view of all disaster-related information to facilitate a coordinated and timely disaster response.
The system enables decision makers to deploy resources at the right time and to the right locations in the event of a natural disaster. The system also enables proactive evacuation of expected impact areas, and for medical and other disaster recovery operations to be established where they are most needed.
The new facility, with an estimated market value of $3.5 million, is located in the Information and Communications Technology Office (ICTO) building, Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines.
The Philippines has the second highest risk of disaster worldwide in the 2014 World Risk Report, after Vanuatu. Located along the Pacific Typhoon belt, the Philippines is vulnerable to frequent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, and is visited 20 tropical cyclones each year, five to seven of which are destructive, according to the Asia Disaster Reduction Centre (ADAC).
Typhoon Haiyan Yolanda was the most devastating natural disaster to hit the Philippines, in terms of the number of people affected and the total cost of damage, according to the International Disaster Database, with estimates that the economic damage may be over US $13 billion.
The IBM Impact Grant to the Philippine government was one of 350 grants to be awarded by IBM in 2014.
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