Presentation on theme: "MEXICO’S EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM: MORE NEED FOR IMPROVEMENT"— Presentation transcript:
1 MEXICO’S EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM: MORE NEED FOR IMPROVEMENT Heriberto Urby, Ph.D.FEMA HIGHER EDUCATION CONFERENCEJune 2011
2 Outline of Presentation IntroductionSignificant hazards and vulnerability in MexicoMajor disaster history – three of top 100 worst disastersLaw and organizationEmergency management activitiesLessons for other countriesConclusion and Recommendations
3 INTRODUCTIONMore serious, intense, and frequent disasters are expected, especially in densely-populated urban areasMexico must continue to bring its emergency management system to standards necessary for humankind in the 21st century
4 Significant hazards and vulnerabilities EarthquakesTornadoesFloodsWildfiresDroughtsMudslidesTsunamisGas Explosions
5 Major disaster history 3 worst disasters among world’s top 100 have occurred in MexicoAttitudes of fatalism are still strongMexico’s large urban areas are permanently on the verge of disaster
6 Law and Organization Major emergency management laws of this nation Systems of Civil Protection, etc.Mexico’s organizational structureHighly bureaucratic and hierarchical (i.e., vertical) organizational chart for emergency management
7 Emergency management activities Mitigation – better land use planning; educating the public (especially children) about hazards and ways to not only reduce but also preventriskPreparedness – developed response procedures, installation of warning systems, evacuations plans, simulation exercises, and training of emergency personnelResponse – bring damaged services and systems back online, search and rescue, food and shelter programs, how to better deal with emergent groupsRecovery – help restore normal operations to the community fast and effectively. Restoration of power, water and other municipal services
8 (Negative) Lessons Learned Many first responders are not certified; this can (and often does) create a disaster-within-a-disaster.Collaboration among emergency managers in the past has been very minimal (i.e., more collaboration is needed).Public intervention needed to protect life, livelihood, and property has been insufficient, erratic, and late in coming (Puente, 1999).
9 (Positive) Lessons Learned Prevention, through reduction of vulnerability, may contribute to the creation of a culture of safety.If professionalism in EMis improved, emergencymanagers’ effectivenesswill increase.
10 CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS Mexico’s EM system hasimproved in last 2-3 decades;more to 21st century standards,however more progress is neededEncourage participation in“simulacros,” and morecollaborative public-privateendeavorsThe government could afford more incentives and opportunities to enhance public participation in the EM system