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Ministry of Education to stage disaster simulation exercise in Buccament Bay

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A disaster simulation exercise is taking place this morning in the Buccament Bay area, regarded as one of the most hazard-prone areas on the mainland.

The exercise, which is aimed “to test the hurricane readiness of stakeholders in the Buccament Bay area…” is slated to begin at 9.00 a.m today.

In a release the Ministry of Education said it is initiating the exercise in keeping with its school safety mandate and in its capacity as part of the shelter management sub-committee of the National Emergency Management Organisation (NEMO).

The disaster scenario will be that of a flash flood resulting in multiple casualties, including two primary school students being washed away by the river.

The ministry said this area was earmarked for the simulation activity because of its proximity to the Buccament River, that makes the community vulnerable to flooding. It noted that a real life experience has in fact resulted in the loss of lives and livelihoods in Buccament Bay.

In addition to testing the hurricane readiness of stakeholders, the simulation exercise is intended “to equip them with the necessary courses of action should a similar occurrence be realized.”

Today’s exercise will take place in the vicinity of the Leeward District Seventh Day Adventist School.

The SVG Coastguard, the Leeward District Seventh Day Adventist Primary School, Buccament Bay Community Disaster Response Team and the Buccament Bay Polyclinic are actively participating in the exercise. This will be followed by an evaluation to be done by a joint team of individuals among whom will be residents of the community, police officers, representatives of the Red Cross, the Ministry of Education, and the Ministry of Health.