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To rely on themselves. The officer behind the actions during an earthquake

Started on June 11 Israeli exercises in preparation for an earthquake. In an interview with customer service representative behind Lieutenant Colonel AVI Berman spoke about the purpose of the exercise, and about what scenario they are.

Colonel Berman, on Sunday, June 11, began teaching in preparation for the possibility of an earthquake in Israel.

Absolutely, the exercises began and will continue until the end of the week. It is important to emphasize that this is a planned teaching, it is not some secret information about it. Exercises are scheduled and their aim is to prepare the public rescue service and the population to the possibility of an earthquake.

Such exercises are held regularly. In between the teachings we hear a lot of discussions and campaigns on this topic. We do not fall into a overdoing?

I don’t think. To answer your question, you need to understand the scale of the threat. In case of strong earthquakes killed tens of thousands of people and hundreds of thousands injured. If people will behave correctly before the earthquake, during an earthquake and after it, the casualties will be much less. And this applies not only population, but also rescue and other government organizations. These organizations must cooperate in critical moments, and this is achieved during the exercise. So here we are not talking about overdoing. The threat of earthquake is much more serious than anything else, what we are getting ready.

How these exercises prepare ordinary citizens to the danger of earthquakes? Suppose that at the time of the earthquake I am in one of the tel Aviv high-rise buildings on the 20th floor, and in Rishon LeZion I have an apartment that is in the house, is not protected from earthquakes.

I’ll tell you what to do in each of these scenarios. By the way, you need to remember that an earthquake can occur at night and may day. All this defines the different forms of reaction. But let’s order. On Tuesday, June 13, at 10:05 you will hear a voice message about a drill. The sirens will not be a voice message. At this point the citizens have to interrupt everything and come out into the open. That’s all a man need to do to save his life at the time of the earthquake. If man can in a matter of seconds to get out into the open, his life is saved.

Open area is the street or corridor, hall?

This is the street.

That is, if I’m on the 20th floor and the building started to wobble…

A perfectly logical question. If you are on the 20th floor, the requirement to go out unrealistic. In this case, you need to enter the protected room (MAMAD) or in protected premises located on the floor (MAMAK). There you have to wait until the end of the earthquake, and then in the stairwell, in any case, not an Elevator, go down and exit the building.

If you have the opportunity to go. Because it can be that you can’t leave, because the stairs are littered with stones and blocked.

In any case, you need to find a way out of the building, as the risk of secondary earthquake is extremely high. The building may already be damaged, and the consequences of secondary aftershocks can be devastating.

And yet, what man who was blocked on the floor and can’t get down the stairs?

First, as a rule, in high-rise buildings have more than one ladder. But if the situation is as you describe, it is recommended to go under heavy furniture. But best of all, I repeat, leave the building and move away from him as possible.

If the person is in the car, then you need to stop – not near tall buildings, not at the intersection and not at the bridge to wait out the earthquake, and then leave. If the earthquake occurs while you are at sea, you need to away from the coast for at least a kilometer, and if this is not possible, to rise at least at the level of the fourth floor because of the danger of tsunami.

What do the people in unprotected houses?

The situation is the following. Houses built before 1980, not built in accordance with the requirements of the protection against earthquakes. They are not protected. By the way, for residents of these houses were invented project TAMA 38.

But you know that not everyone uses the opportunities that it provides.

Not only not all. A minority took advantage of this opportunity. But if we are talking about the steps made by the state – it gave people the opportunity to improve its readiness for an earthquake by such a completion.

And yet, what should people do if their house or apartment is not secure?

They should act in accordance with the rules, which I said earlier is to go outside, if it is not to enter the MAMAD, if no Handicap, then go to the stairwell. The ladder is a good solution because it is sustainable and can provide protection.

The exercises involved not only the army, but also the municipalities, ministries and so on. The division of responsibilities between all actors in the first minutes, hours after the earthquake? It is unlikely in army have enough professionals to take charge.

First, a lot of rescuers, and, if necessary, are involved both soldiers and officers, conscripts, and reservists.

You can call the number? How many such specialists in the army?

Can’t. But a lot of them, and they have a vast experience in Israel and abroad – in India, in Turkey, in other countries. But of course in the event of a major earthquake, rescue workers, able to immediately come to the aid of all, not enough and people should take care of themselves. If they are able, we must help ourselves, because the expectation of assistance may take a very long time.

But it is obvious that the army is not the only structure operating at this moment. Fire is an organization having vast experience, ambulance, police. By the way, it must be remembered that in peacetime the police led by the situation.

Let’s stop at this point, it is important. The earthquake happened. Who is coordinating the rescue operation, the army or the police?

Formally, the police. This organization supervises the resolution of emergencies in peacetime.

It formally. And in fact?

Sometimes, when we are talking about a situation of this magnitude, which can’t handle the police and the fire service, they turn to the rear, and generally get approval for the transfer of army control over the situation.

Firefighters and police have the power to help people immediately after the earthquake?

The police have no. Only the police carries out the General management of the rescue operation. Firefighters, of course there is. What is their equipment, what their skills and so on – is another question. They are limited and usually quickly call for help to the army.

What is the function of municipalities?

They have a major role. If I was homeless, I temporarily accommodated in tent camps. For them, the responsible municipalities. Again, the entire operation to ensure the residents of the tent cities necessary is by means of army service and so on. But the control is in the hands of municipalities. They are also responsible for the temporary burial of the dead. But again, municipalities fairly quickly turn to other organizations, primarily to the army.

If I understand you correctly, the formal responsibility for helping people immediately after the earthquake lies on the police and the municipality, but in practice the majority of the work falls out of the army.

Yes. And because of the experience, and because of the size… But it is important to emphasize that when an earthquake occurs, the first to help people come up with fire. The rear service in peacetime is not in the cities. There is a fire, there is the dispatching service of the municipality (106), there is an ambulance. The army is a support structure in such a situation.

As for the exercises, the interaction between all the structures? Can you describe the scenario?

As for population, I have already described – Tuesday at 10:05 on the received signal to go outside or in the MAMAD. As for organizations, institutions and agencies – is the so-called post exercise is the so-called physical exercises. In the framework of the military exercises, the representatives of the organizations responsible for emergency preparedness are on the ground, together with representatives of the home front and other emergency rescue organizations and get a «message» about, say, the collapse of a building in bat Yam. Based on the information received the script, they act as they should act in a real situation. And the rescuers at this time, leave the place «incidents» where a complete simulation of rescue operations. Of course, after the completion of the exercise will be conducted in the study results. It is no less important a part than the teachings themselves, as it allows you to trace what has been done right and what needs improvement.

Interviewed Gabby Wolfson

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To rely on themselves. The officer behind the actions during an earthquake 12.06.2017

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