Published: Friday, May 3, 2013

Savar tragedy aftermath: Better coordination using tech

Savar tragedy aftermath: Better coordination using tech

A national calamity of a very serious proportion has befallen Bangladesh. It has been more than a bolt from the blue when a high-rise building at Savar, on the outskirts of the capital, collapsed like a pack of cards.
With a view towards achieving a safe and secure society, we need to develop ICT for disaster prevention with the aim of connecting networks, transmitting information, and supporting actions even at the time of a disaster.

Lack of coordination:
Situation like this makes us think, are we really prepare to handle this kind of disasters? Do  we have any kind of rescue plan to reduce general people’s misery and save valuable lives in a short period of time? Though we are short in hand and under budget but this is high time to take some steps for disaster management. We need an organised plan to handle this kind of situation effectively to maintain a flawless rescue operation.

Disaster strategic command Centre:
Disaster strategic Command Centre is part of Emergency disaster control centre which consists of planning and emergency strategy management unit and information unit. It is the brain and heart of the total rescue operation.
Information unit will collect, process and give output about all disaster related information. According to the data, planning unit will come up with disaster management plan and work accordingly. It will be a mobile command centre which can be used to fight against any kind of disaster situation.
This may be packed in a mobile platform and may be placed at a convenient place.
The mobile command vehicle is designed for commanding response teams for disasters; it is the base of Disaster Management Strategic Command Centre; it will be a portable point of strategic development and deployment to manage disaster; and it will provide help and service for victims.

Possible support from emergency call center:
Emergency call center will work as a one stop solution for emergency disaster related information with a designated short code, for example 2424, for easy connection and service.
Designated call center support executive will provide services like: missing person list; identity/information of victims; easy searching facility for victims family; emergency contact information; international co operation; task information (who is responsible for which task); support information which includes material support, requirement analysis report, collection point; people wish to help (how to donate cash, medicine, food, water etc allocation, medical help, advisory,voluntary help)
We believe enabling cross-organisation sharing of information among multiple disaster-prevention institutions, technology for a wide area disaster-prevention platform is very much needed. For decision making, plans to develop technology for presenting work procedures and decision-making items in the event of a disaster or crisis and for presenting the information needed to draw conclusions with the aim of achieving efficient anti-disaster activities.
Lastly, by promoting technology development and business systems in collaboration, we plan to provide total risk management and disaster prevention solutions using ICT and to contribute to the realization of a safe and secure society.

The author is director and COO of DataSoft
manjur@datasoft-bd.com