Globe Telecom and PLDT subsidiary Smart Communications say they are ready for the 2017 Metro Manila Shakedrill, aimed at building disaster management capacities in the event a 7.2 magnitude earthquake hits the city.
Both cellcos will partner with the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) in carrying out the drill, which is scheduled for July 14.
Organized by the Metro Manila Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (MMDRRMC), the Metro Manila Shakedrill on July 14 simulates a 7.2 magnitude movement of the West Valley Fault, mainly affecting Metro Manila. An alarm will sound off at 16:00 to signal the start of the drill. MMDA will be doing the mock exercise for four days, from July 14 to July 17 to allow other emergency responders from other regions to come in and participate. MMDA said the shake drill aims to identify the gaps during the first two drills held in 2015 and 2016.
Officials of Davao City and the MMDA will signal the start of the drills by using Smart’s Emergency Cell Broadcast System (ECBS), which will send alert messages to residents in the area informing them of the activity.
Smart will also deploy Smart Satellite solutions and LTE mobile connectivity to ensure uninterrupted communications among response units. These services will complement the free calling and charging services for the use of earthquake and tsunami drill participants.
Globe will provide various connectivity tools to assist MMDA in implementing the drill in Metro Manila, including prepaid SIMs, prepaid credits, and internet connectivity in each of the MMDA’s quadrants as well as in the agency’s emergency operations center. Globe will also provide mobile cell sites in each of MMDA’s quadrants.
In announcing their participation in this year’s drill, both cellcos took the opportunity to promote their disaster readiness credentials.
Globe pointed out that it was first telecoms company in the Philippines to secure an enterprise-wide business continuity ISO certification.
Smart said its ECBS makes it the only telco to comply with Republic Act No. 10639, or the Free Mobile Disaster Alerts Act.