New Report Finds British Columbia Not Prepared for Catastrophic Earthquake

According to an article on www.canadianunderwriter.ca, British Columbia Auditor General Russ Jones has found that neither the Canadian province nor Emergency Management British Columbia (EMBC) has made it a priority to prepare for a catastrophic earthquake.

The auditor general’s findings are presented in a report available on his office’s website (link below).

“Successive governments have decided to allocate scarce public resources to meet more immediate pressing demands, rather than to adequately prepare the province for a catastrophic earthquake that may or may not occur,” Jones said in a press release.

According to the article, this report has similar findings to the Office of the Auditor General’s report on emergency management in 1997. This shows little progress over the past 17 years.

Here are the auditor general’s recommendations as shown in the report from his office:

Provincial Recommendations

We recommend that:

1) government develop long-term goals for catastrophic earthquake preparedness, including the level of preparedness it expects EMBC to achieve in the next 5, 10 and 15 years.

2) government ensures EMBC has the capacity necessary to address identified critical gaps and achieve government’s expected level of preparedness.

Emergency Management B.C. Recommendations

We recommend that:

3) EMBC develop a strategic plan to meet the Province’s long-term goals. The plan should clearly demonstrate how EMBC will evaluate the effectiveness of its activities against its goals.

4) EMBC identify, rank and prioritize completion of its own key plans and procedures to ensure it meets its mandate to prepare and respond to a catastrophic earthquake.

5) EMBC regularly review its earthquake program to identify significant gaps and risks to a coordinated and integrated response, and develop actions to address them.

6) EMBC regularly review and evaluate its stakeholders’ emergency plans and procedures to assess stakeholder readiness and capacity.

7) EMBC conduct regular catastrophic earthquake exercises with its stakeholders to ensure it can deliver an effective, comprehensive and integrated government-wide response to a catastrophic earthquake.

8) EMBC measure the effectiveness of its public preparedness initiatives at regular intervals.

9) EMBC report annually to British Columbians on the state of its catastrophic earthquake preparedness. The report should include an assessment of the overall state of earthquake preparedness, risks and capacity, and describe the plans and achievements of the Inter-Agency Emergency Preparedness Council (IEPC).

 

To access the full report, click here: https://www.bcauditor.com/pubs/2014/report15/catastrophic-earthquake-preparedness

For the article we found, click here: http://www.canadianunderwriter.ca/news/emergency-management-bc-not-adequately-prepared-for-catastrophic-earthquake-report/1002983655/?&er=NA