Participants: DPPI SEE member countries (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia and Turkey), European Commission, Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), UNISDR and MSB- IPA DRAM.
DAY I – 35th DPPI SEE regional meeting
Opening remarks by DPPI SEE Chair-in-Office 2017 (Romania)
MR.MARIUS DOGEANU, the representative of Director General of the General Inspectorate for Emergency Situations made the first opening remark by presenting the Romanian Ambassador in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and pointed out an importance of all topics of meeting agenda.
AMBASSADOR MS. DANA-MANUELA CONSTANTINESCU
The Romanian Ambassador mentioned the importance of the influence of the state institutions in helping communities face and recover after disasters. This way, the need of communication and resilience between the two is essential.
The Ambassador mentioned the active role of the Initiative in the region pointing out the most important activities organized under its umbrella, especially taking into account the fact that Romania holds the current Chair-in-Office. She thanked the DPPI SEE Parties for the ongoing and unconditional support in organizing the events and promoting new initiatives.
The ambassador also mentioned that Romania hopes that the future Chair-in-Office, Turkey will be continuing the ongoing projects with Romanian help, despite the fact that our country will be strongly involved in the preparations of the future European Presidency, in the spring of 2019.
MR. SAMIR AGIC - HOST COUNTRY REPRESENTATIVE
The representative of the host country Mr.Agic, on behalf of the Ministry of Security, excused the minster, Mr. Mektic, for his absence, due an urgent and unscheduled meeting of the government. Mr.Agic also welcomed to all DPPI SEE member country representatives in Sarajevo.
35th DPPI SEE regional meeting (OPEN session)
Latest developments in civil protection of the DPPI SEE member countries
Update on recent emergencies in the SEE
- For the government made a priority from the civil protection field, high-lightning that the country’s legislation is undergoing modifications. An important part of the legislative modification is related to the early warning system improvement and prevention of floods by population preparedness.
- Regarding the latest disasters recorded in the past year, the most important were the forest fires. Albania reached for help through the UCPM, but the only substantial help came from Greece, and the most of the interventions were managed by the local authorities.
- The main event of 2017 was the NATO-EADRCC exercise, organized in Tuzla, between 25 and 29 of September. The local authorities were given a positive feed-back from the exercise participants, and also through the lesson learned with this occasion.
- Currently, the Bosnian authorities are trying to connect to EU in order to become a Participating State inside the UCPM. The BiH Representative expressed their interest to actively contribute to the structure of the Mechanism. So, they made an appeal to the present Participating States in the UCPM to support their integration process.
- The main challenge for the Bulgarian authorities was focused on the forest fires in August that affected south western part of the country and the module that we registered in the voluntary pool of EU is ground forest fire fighting module using vehicles (GFFF-V). The limitation and extinguishing actions were hampered by the constant winds, elevated temperatures, and the presence of the oil and natural gases conduits. The situation demanded the national emergency plan activation with major mobilization of specialized equipment and personnel.
- Regarding the UCPM activities, was mentioned the registration of one forest fire module and the organizing of a MODEX exercise, for the next year, in the light of the Bulgarian Presidency of the EU Presidency.
- Croatia was affected also by extensive forest fires incidents, which were a direct consequence of the prolonged drought recorded nationwide. The fires were difficult to control due to the Adriatic winds. Fortunately, they were no recorded casualties, and the infrastructure didn’t suffer significant loses.
- Compared to other years, the main noted difference of the registered fires was their territorial spreading which, once reaching a certain area became harder to control. Fortunately, Croatia has important aerial fire-fighting capabilities, and that made unnecessary the UCPM activation, making even possible to help other countries with similar problems.
- Another event related to disasters was the flood registered in September 2017 when, in a 24 hour period, dropped 370 mm of water on square cm.
- After these disasters, some changes occurred in the implementation of the new national security strategy adopted at the beginning of the year, strategy developed since 2002. So, in the national security coordination body appears the civil protection component.
- In the next period of time, it will be performed a complete evaluation of the civil protection system and the report presented at the beginning of the year, followed by the development of an optimization proposal.
- Alongside these aspects, it is wanted that the coordination system became more efficient and the transfer of the authority at local level should be made under a governmental department.
- The representative mentioned that the new disaster national strategy will be forwarded to the government this December.
- As other activities, they are currently involved with IPA DRAM, IPA FLOODS, UCPM (DIRECT project, SVAROG 2017 project and ADRIATIC 2018 project) UCPM and DG ECHO in organizing a TTX exercise and trainings for water rescue training with teams from Slovenia and Czech Republic, and other activities. Also, they participated in the NATO exercise, in Tuzla, with JERU and CBRN teams.
- The country was also affected by forest fires, in the central and southern part of the territory, where was mobilized most of the national forces, over 100 vehicles, and multiple national authorities. The activation of the UCPM and NATO became necessary and help was provided by Ukraine, Bulgaria Croatia, Switzerland and Israel.
- It is expected that the new risk disaster management law will be adopted soon. This law was meant to be implemented both at national and local level. In developing and drafting its final form help was provided by different international institutions. So, the first risk evaluation will be finalized until 2018.
- Multiple exercises were also organized, as well as programs destined to special categories are published on the web page of the Ministry of Interior. The next big exercise is going to be in Serbia, under NATO umbrella.
- As recent emergencies, on the national territory, the forest fires were the main disaster recorded this year. Fortunately, most of them were controlled within the earliest stages.
- Regarding the implementation of the Sendai Framework Slovenia has prepared draft Action Plan on the basis of the Action Plan on the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 prepared by European Commission. In June 2017 Slovenia has amended document on the Sustainable development of the Republic of Slovenia based on the Sendai indicators. Slovenian delegation has also attended different DRR events.
- In the year 2018 Slovenia will celebrate the twentieth anniversary of 112 number as international emergency number. From 25 to 27 of April 2018 Ljubljana will host EENA Conference 2018.
- There were no major emergencies in the period from April till November 2017 which would require international assistance. In August there were two forest fires in Divača and in Komen where Slovenian armed forces with helicopters and planes were involved. Also three industrial accidents happened during the summer (factories Kemis, Ekoplastkom and Ekosistemi).
- ACPDR is currently involved in 23 different EU projects, five of which are conducting in the SEE region (IPA FLOODS, IPA DRAM, exercise “ADRIATIC 2018” and FRISCO 1).
- It was mentioned that at national level efforts are being made to update de procedures and the preparedness and prevention system in case of disasters. Currently, the Turkish authorities are involved in the development of a new national strategy in this area.
- Recently, a conference regarding the Determination and reducing of technological risks was held in Antalya with very good representation from many countries. Also, conferences on the civil protection area will be organized next year regarding many other aspects, such as preparedness at disaster of individuals with special needs.
- The governmental changes did not affect the institutional management and this allowed the process of purchase of new equipment was continued including on the medical emergency area.
- In October, took place the first visit of NATO experts in the context of evaluation of resilience.
- Currently, all governmental authorities are involved in the preparations for the upcoming EU Council presidency in 2019.
- As for the civil protection activities, the next items on the calendar are an INSARAG meeting for an USAR module certification, and MODEX exercises in Italy and France.
- Romania, in Consortium with Croatia and Montenegro, expects the results of the evaluation for the MODEX project, and after the signing of the contract, exercises focused on fire forests will be organized in Croatia, and then in Montenegro.
- At national level, this year was almost uneventful. In September, a few very strong storms and floods made 8 victims and 100 wounded, in the western part of the country. The storm was not forecast and the victims were caused by the fallen trees, so a change in the warning systems will be made in order to announce the public about the dangerous areas by mobile phones.