Redressing “slogans” in risk management standards
The critical or strategic infrastructure, supply chains, cities services are at any time endangered and vulnerable to any extraordinary event, demonstrating the case studies of the CRISPRO benchmarking exercise. Even a chemical, transport or fire incident could easily spread and contract any part of the civilian infrastructure. Nowadays, the EU security strategy emphasises the need for critical infrastructure protection (CIP).
Furthermore, extreme wind, temperature, snow, rain, landslides, floods, storms and tornado events, especially those with cross-border impacts, can be subject to political repercussions. In general, the personnel is not adequately equipped or prepared to effectively respond in such crises, which require an abrupt response and multi-sectoral control measures. In such situations, ad-hoc arrangements are commonly adopted, resulting in operational problems.
City smartening also increases interdependency and cost-effectiveness. Systems use one infrastructure/utility network as a provision or firmware for multiple services. It brings more troubles in unsecured by an extraordinary natural, social or cyber event.
CRISPRO collected examples demonstrate that the performance of emergency services is subject to comprehensive prevention and preparedness based on perceived expectations and incomplete evidence. If we don’t implement disaster response knowledge in developing our capacity for major operations, the lessons learned will be little more than a slogan.
CRISPRO benchmarks some essential measures following the preparation, reaction and recovery disaster management cycle.
- regular monitoring of the resilience of most vulnerable areas, invest in the classification of vulnerability and invest in strengthening of monitoring and analytical source,
- develop a specific na-tech and multi-hazards monitoring methods and intervention contingency planning, manuals and SOP for reaction to minimise the cascading effect of na-tech,
- invest in the identification of all possible side effects,
- prepare various types of intervention technologies and capacities, involve more multi-sectoral knowledge and expertise,
- analyse regularly similar incidents in other countries, learn from previous historical incidents, learn from gaps and failure in reaction, immediately change SOP based on the latest gaps,
- modernise early warning systems and promote live monitoring contingency planning
- evaluate of social, economic and health vulnerability,
- pay attention to relevant vulnerabilities, assess vulnerabilities in situational awareness, involve people with multiple experiences and knowledge in conduction situational awareness in the reaction.
Creating partnerships among first responders, businesses and community stakeholders can ensure that the right people respond to a crisis.
Public-private partnership (PPP) is becoming more and more important since the private sector owns and runs much of the vital functions of society. In addition, the civil society sectors organised voluntary organisations can have an important role to play in supporting the emergency services in the planning, response and recovery phases of most emergencies.
Through social media, members of the public who witness incidents can provide public safety and protection organisations with timely, geographic-based information. This information can be used by decision-makers in planning response strategies, deploying resources in the field, and, in turn, providing updated and accurate information to the public.
Artificial intelligence technology has penetrated all walks of life, bringing great changes to industry development and new experiences to human work and life. Today, Drones, robots and sensors can provide intelligent and accurate information concerning landscapes and damaged buildings. This allows rescue workers to understand the topography of a landscape and the extent of damage to a building. In addition, drones can find victims trapped in debris allowing rescue workers to get to them quickly.
It is worth noting that as all these new ways are helping to manage the risk in the form of planning, mitigation measures, incentives and capital investments, they also bring potential risks of malfunctioning, misinformation or deliberate misuse.
It would be useful to have a European Union level standard of collecting essential information of emergencies and the conduct of the participating organisations and actors. In emergency management, there is risk mitigation, and reduction risk management standards are designed as a tool for continuous improvements.
By learning from past case studies and attempting to foresee future requirements, it may be possible to reduce the negative consequences of extreme weather events through definitive and effective policy decisions.