Implementing urgent measures to actively respond to natural disasters
Implementing urgent measures to actively respond to natural disasters (19/09/2020)
The Prime Minister has just issued Directive No. 35/CT-TTg dated September 1 on implementing a number of urgent measures to proactively respond to natural disasters.
The Directive mentioned it is forecasted that the rainy and storm season shall appear late this year. It is also forecasted that there will be approx. 7-9 storms, including 4-5 storms will directly affect Vietnam’s mainland and mainly hit the Central and South regions. Risks of heavy, repeated and prolonged rain and floods in a short time in the Central region, flash floods and landslides in the North and North Central mountainous areas are also forecasted and warned.
In order to proactively prevent and effectively respond to abnormal developments of natural disasters in the coming time, especially prolonged heavy rain, strong storms, flash floods, landslides, the Prime Minister requested the Central Steering Committee for Natural Disaster Prevention and Control (CCNDPC), the National Committee for Incident and Disaster Response and Search and Rescue (VINASARCOM), Ministries, sectors, party committees and authorities at all levels focus on leading, directing and strictly implementing Directive No. 42-CT/TW dated March 24, 2020 of the Party Secretariat on strengthening the Party's leadership over the prevention, response and recovery of disaster consequences and Resolution No. 76/NQ-CP dated June 18, 2018 of the Government on natural disaster prevention and control.
The Prime Minister asked the People's Committees of provinces and cities under Central Government to closely monitor natural disasters, promptly direct and implement disaster risk management and recovery adopting the motto "4-on-the-spot"; review and update scenarios to proactively respond to such dangerous natural disasters as rain, large-scale floods, late storms, flash floods, landslides.
In addition, PPCs are requested to direct overall inspection of dangerous areas, especially areas at risk of landslides and flash floods where residential safety can be affected so that they can be proactively evacuated and relocated to safe areas before the disaster occurs; inspect dikes, dams and reservoirs in their provinces; ensure that dike and dam safety and protection plans and necessary resources are made available before heavy rain and flood, especially for key, critical and vulnerable structures.
Proactively allocating local budgets and mobilizing other legal capital sources to promptly fix structural damages or repair critical and vulnerable structures to ensure safety for dykes, dam, reservoirs; implementing disaster risk management and search and rescue activities in their respective localities. 
Directing and supervising the operation of reservoirs to ensure their safety; reservoir storage is absolutely not allowed where reservoir safety is not ensured; strengthening the installation of monitoring and supervision systems, providing data for technology units and agencies as regulated, including warning information before a reservoir discharge will take place etc. to ensure downstream safety. Providing equipment and building capacity for the commune-level first natural disaster response taskforce so that they can well perform disaster risk management and disaster responses under the motto "four on the spot".
The Prime Minister asked the CCNDPC to direct and urge Ministries, sectors and localities to review specific scenarios to preemptively respond to dangerous natural disasters, especially long-term heavy rain, heavy flood discharge from upstream of transnational rivers, strong storms, super typhoon, flash floods, landslides, inundation, droughts, saltwater intrusion etc. without being passive in disaster responses.
Closely monitoring natural disaster developments, promptly directing the implementation of natural disaster responses and advising the Government and the Prime Minister on proper directions to responses to dangerous natural disasters according to their assigned mandates; directing and coordinating with related Ministries and sectors to review and propose urgent emergency recovery of disaster consequences, especially for key and vulnerable dikes and dams and areas prone to landslides and flash floods etc. to ensure preemptive actions before heavy rains and floods.
Improving disaster monitoring and inspection capacity; speeding up the investments in specialized monitoring and inspection systems serving the direction and administration of the CCNDPC so that information can be received and transmitted in a timely and accurate manner.
The VINASARCOM, the Ministry of Defense shall direct and urge the completion of search and rescue plans, especially response plans for large flood and large-scale inundations; based on specific situations, the VINASARCOM shall chair and coordinate with other Ministries, sectors and localities to allocate necessary resources and means to key and vulnerable areas, outlying and remote areas etc. so that they can be quickly accessible and responses can be deployed during a natural disaster incident.
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment shall organize the observations, measurement, strict monitoring, forecasting and timely communication of disaster events and flows in transboundary rivers serving disaster directions and responses; continue to improve disaster warning and forecasting capacity; early forecasts, long-term forecasts, timely and reliable and continuous communication of disaster information.
The Prime Minister assigned the Ministry of Industry and Trade to direct the review, inspection and implementation of measures to ensure safety of hydraulic structures under their management, especially hydropower reservoirs, power systems and mineral exploration and exploitation operations. The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development shall direct the review, inspection and implementation of measures to ensure safety of irrigation structures (dams, reservoirs and dykes) under their management; providing directions to agricultural and aquaculture production activities so that disaster impacts on these activities will be minimized.
The Ministry of Transport shall direct the review and inspection of transport safety protection  plans for disaster events; proactively allocate forces, resources, materials and equipment to key and vulnerable areas prone to landslides and deep inundation to ensure traffic safety and to be ready for recovery actions after disaster incidents.
The Ministry of Planning and Investment and the Ministry of Finance shall review, balance and set priorities of Central budget contingency for 2020 and other capitals; coordinate with the CCNDPC to support localities in rapid recovery of disaster consequences and perform a number of disaster emergency tasks to preemptively respond to heavy rain and floods or to urgently fix key landslide risky areas and vulnerable irrigation dams and dykes  to ensure their safety in disaster events.
Vietnam Television Station, Voice of Vietnam and news agencies and media shall effectively maintain their routine communication of disaster information, providing instructions on responding skills to people so that they can take preemptive actions before disasters come. Other Ministries and sectors shall proactively direct their functional agencies to implement DRM and Search and Rescue plans based on their respective state management functions to ensure that disaster damages and losses will be minimized.

Translator: Nhat Ha

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