| Faza Suraj |
DUE to the monsoon season, Belait District has experienced unpredictable severe wind conditions and heavy rainfall where the water level has risen to 0.7 metre.
This has triggered the activation point leading to the deployment of the flood support team to handle the affected G9/G10 BSP residential area in Panaga situated near a river – a scenario simulated during an exercise organised by Brunei Shell Petroleum Company Sdn Bhd (BSP) on Wednesday.
For the first time ever, BSP coordinated with government officials to test their preparedness in handling a flood emergency to assess the interfaces between BSP and government agencies. The exercise involved more than 100 personnel from the Emergency Response Team from the Seria and Kuala Belait’s Fire and Rescue Department, traffic police from the Seria Police Station and a medical team from Suri Seri Begawan Hospital.
This was stated by Pg Zamni bin Pg Hj Tajuddin the BSP Emergency Response Coordinator, also the Exercise Director, who led ‘Exercise Ayer BAH’.
The exercise which started at the G9/G10 area and extending up to Supa Save required the cooperation of the staff members of the supermarket to gather at the assembly areas to simulate a real situation where it would be safer for them to be away from the affected building. The exercise also involved some roadblocks being set up along Jalan Tengah which were announced a few days earlier to the public to help them plan their routes if they were travelling during the exercise.
“This included evacuation and taking care of the welfare of the flood victims. With the flood, there are other risks which can come from the incident and different departments have their roles.
“For example, the medical team’s presence is to ensure that the health of the victims is taken care of to prevent an outbreak of diseases and also to assess any injured victims. Meanwhile, the presence of the traffic police officers was to control the traffic flow or even halting any incoming cars into the area if the situation escalates even further,” he said.
“We chose the G9 and G10 areas because in the past, those areas were prone to flood. Initially the involvement was just from the departments within BSP and as the situation escalated, we saw a need to involve government agencies. From experience, when G9/G10 areas were affected due to the overflowing river, we tried to handle it within BSP but unfortunately the flood continued to worsen as it spread to Supa Save and the Panaga Police Station. This exercise was to see how well we could integrate with the government officials. We will organise more in the near future to better tighten the gaps and ensure the fluidity of the operation.”