OCD: do risk assessment before building ‘dream house’

ZAMBOANGA CITY (MindaNews/01 July) – People who intend to build a house should do a risk assessment first of the site, an Office of Civil Defense (OCD) official said Tuesday.

Jose Eric Castillo, OCD regional officer-in-charge, said the assessment is to determine the risk and hazard of the place where they intend to build their “own dream house.”

Castillo said they can coordinate with the concerned government agencies such as the Mines and Geosciences Bureau and Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology for the risk assessment.

He said it is expensive to conduct risk assessment but it is for the safety of those who will live in the house.

“It is difficult to invest for a dream house and here comes an earthquake, mahati yong bahay mo,” he said.

“But if you think risk assessment is too expensive, then try disaster,” he added.

However, he said he can just give an advice and reminder but cannot dictate what the people should do.

Castillo issued the advice as he announced the activities for the observance of the National Disaster Consciousness Month in this city, which opened with a thanksgiving mass. It was followed by a motorcade and a short program at the Paseo del Mar here.

Executive Order No. 137 dated August 10, 1999 designates July as disaster consciousness month

Castillo said they have lined up a water search and rescue training on July 1-5 in Zamboanga Sibugay and a rapid damage assessment and needs analysis the venue of which has yet to be finalized.

He said they will hold earthquake drills on July 2 at the Don Pablo Lorenzo Memorial High School and Ateneo de Zamboanga University high school department in this city.

A similar drill will also be held on July 11 in Dipolog City.

This year’s disaster consciousness month carried the theme “Kahandaan at Kaligtasan ng Pamayanan, Pundasyon ng Kaunlaran.” (MindaNews)