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Friday, September 13, 2019, 07:08 (GMT+7)
Yen Bai armed forces actively respond to natural calamities

Yen Bai is a mountainous province, separated by three rivers namely: Hong, Lo and Chay. The province is prone to severe weather and rising and complicated trend of natural calamities which badly affect its socio-economic development and military and defence activities. Fully aware of the risk and consequences of the incidents and its assigned mission, over the past years, the provincial armed forces have been active in responding to and alleviating the consequences of natural calamities and search and rescue with a number of synchronous and drastic measures, bringing into full play its role as a vanguard and reliable force of the local authorities and people in the area.

Search and rescue drill on river

To do that, first of all, the Provincial Military Committee and Command have focused their leadership and direction over the propaganda and education work to heighten the awareness and activeness of their officers and soldiers about the task of responding and alleviating the consequences of natural calamities, search and rescue. Annually, especially before stormy season, party committees and commandants of each units and localities hold briefing on the directives, resolutions, and instructions of upper echelons on the prevention, control, alleviation of natural calamities, search and rescue to all officers and soldiers in a thorough and serious manner. Emphasis is placed on the Directive No. 03/CT-TTg dated 03 February 2016 of the Prime Minister on strengthening the prevention and control of natural calamities, and search and rescue in the 2016 - 2020 period; the Resolution No. 689-NQ/QUTW of the Central Military Commission and the Resolution No. 02-NQ/ĐU of the MR2 on “Prevention, control and alleviation of natural calamities, and search and rescue of incidents until 2020 and beyond”. As the Standing Office of the Provincial Committee for Search and Rescue, the Provincial Military Command has actively coordinated with the provincial departments and sectors to build propaganda on mass media while conducting educational activities in the training and exercise of responding to natural calamities, search and rescue of localities, etc. Thereby, people are made aware of the viewpoints, principles, guidelines and requirements for preventing and controling natural disasters, search and rescue, as well as advantages and disadvantages in implementing this important task - “the combat task in peace time”. Moreover, troops become more active and determined in their task performance.

The recent incidents show that, though the calamities were not severe and had been warned beforehand, loose coordination in the prevention, control, alleviation of the calamities, and search and rescue was one of the reason leading to high cost and serious consequences. Fully aware of this, the Provincial Military Command have actively coordinated with other departments and sectors in studying and recommending to the Provincial Party Committee and People’s Committee plans and projects for infrastructure development, socio-economic development connected with calamity prevention and control, particularly the plans for reinhabitation, removing people from areas highly prone to floods and landslides, etc. At the same time, it has issued directives, instructions guiding its affiliate units to build plans for calamity prevention and control, search and recue relevant to their functions and areas of operation. With the motto of “Actively prevent and control, opportunely respond, quickly and effectively overcome with priority given to prevention”, military offices at all levels have actively advised to local authorities measures for enhancing their leadership, direction and management of the prevention and control of the calamities, search and rescue; screen, adjust, supplement the plans; make preparation of forces, material, vehicle in each localities, especially in focal, remote and far-flung areas in accordance with the “four in place” guideline.

The Provincial Military Command has directed its affiliates to regularly consolidate and improve the quality and effectiveness of the Committees for natural disaster prevention and control, search and recue at all levels; strictly adhere to the duty regime, particularly in stormy and dry seasons; stick to the localities, coordinate with local party committees and authorities to grasp and anticipate the situation; regularly check the focal irrigation structures and crucial areas with high risk of calamities, etc. In the event of an incident, the Provincial Military Command directs its affiliate units and localities to maintain communications in all conditions; establish headquarters in focal areas to coordinate with local authorities and the armed forces stationing in the areas to deploy forces and vehicles for overcoming the consequences.

To enhance the capability and effectiveness in responding and alleviating the natural calamities, the Provincial Military Command has directed its units to renew contents and methods of training, improve the practical level for forces; strengthen training and exercise in accordance with the approved plans. In 2018, the Provincial Military Command in collaboration with functional departments advised the Provincial Party Committees and People’s Committee to direct the Yen Bai city and 5 communes to hold natural disaster prevention and control, search and rescue exercise with the participation of over 1,600 people, thereby essentially improving the level of operating the leading, commanding, and coordinating mechanism between local authorities and forces stationing in the areas in responding to incidents.

Alleviating the consequences of natural disaster

With the strong leadership and direction, the close coordination and the spirit of “all for the people”, the Provincial armed forces has always pioneered and opportunely showed up their presence at the point of incident. This has clearly proved their role as a vanguard, key and reliable force of the authorities and people in responding to and alleviating the calamities. In 2018 and the first half of 2019, the provincial armed forces have deployed more than 450 officers and soldiers, 1,900 militiamen, 100 reserves with over 15,000 working days and hundreds of vehicles participating in responding to and overcoming the consequences of flood, landslide, forest fire; rescued nearly 50 people; evacuated over 450 households from dangerous areas; cleaned up more than 2,100 houses, 25 schools and public projects, over 200 km of road. Besides, the provincial armed forces have also donated hundreds of million Vietnam Dong, food, medicine, clothes for needy people. The image of provincial armed forces dipping in the flood regardless of danger to protect the property of the State, the life and property of people has made a deep impression in the heart and mind of local people, further beatify the tradition and fine virtues of “Uncle Ho soldier”.

Promoting the gained achievements, in the coming time, the Provincial Military Command will coordinate closely with other departments and sectors to advise to the Provincial People’s Committee and the Provincial Committee for natural disaster prevention and control, search and rescue to further perfect the leading and operating mechanism; mobilise resources; exchange information; build coordinating regulations and thoroughly prepare for the task of preventing, controlling and alleviating the consequences of natural disasters. Strengthen leadership, direction of party committees and commandants at all levels in the task; focus on building in place forces, especially the militia, self defence, reserve force in focal, remote and far flung areas; build and complete plans, make preparation in material, vehicle which suits the local features, and hold exercises and training. Seriously maintain duty regime, be ready to deploy forces and vehicles to opportunely respond to the incidents, contributing to socio-economic development, defence and security consolidation, deserving the trust of authorities and people. Finally actively mobilise resources for new procurement of vehicles serving for search and rescue to enhance the capability and effectiveness of its performance of this task.

Senior Colonel Le Van Trung, Member of the Provincial Party Committee Standing Office, Commander of the Provincial Military Command

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