NDMA for preparedness measures amid rain, snowfall prediction

ISLAMABAD, Jan 09 (APP): The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) here on Monday issued a detailed advisory for the nationwide preparedness measures to cope with rain and snowfall prediction advising the provinces to ensure mass awareness and sensitization of the travellers and tourists to the high risk areas.

The NDMA advisory mentioned the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) forecast, citing that a westerly wave was likely to enter North Balochistan on January 10 (night) and was likely to grip upper parts of the country from January 11-13 (Wednesday to Friday).

Under the influence of this weather system, following events were forecast as moderate rain was expected in Islamabad from January 11-13 (Wednesday to Friday).

However, in Balochistan rain and snowfall (with isolated heavy falls) was expected in Barkhan, Chaman, Dalbandin, Harnai, Muslim Bagh, Nokkundi, Pishin, Qila Abdullah, Qila Saifullah, Quetta, Zhob and Ziarat on January10 (night) and 11 (Tuesday & Wednesday).

Moreover, light rain was also expected along the Makran Coast on January 11 and 12 (Wednesday & Thursday).
In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, rain (with moderate to isolated heavy snowfall) was expected in Abbottabad, Chitral, Dir, Galiyat Region, Kohistan, Malakand, Mansehra and Swat from January 11-13 (Wednesday to Friday).

Moreover, moderate rain was also expected in Peshawar, Nowshera, Swabi, Bajaur, Bannu, Charsadda, Karak, Kohat, Kurram and Waziristan during the same period whereas light rain may also occur in Dera Ismail Khan on January 11 & 12 (Wednesday & Thursday).

In Punjab, moderate rain was expected in Potohar Region, Bhakkar, Faisalabad, Gujranwala, Gujrat, Hafizabad, Jhang, Kasur, Khushab, Lahore, Layyah, Mianwali, Murree, Nankana Sahib, Narowal, Sahiwal, Sargodha, Sialkot,
Sheikhupura, Toba Tek Singh and Okara from January 11-13 (Wednesday to Friday).
Moreover, light rain may occur in Dera Ghazi Khan, Khanewal, Muzaffargarh, Multan and Pakpattan on January 11 & 12 (Wednesday & Thursday).

In, Gilgit Baltistan, rain (with moderate to isolated heavy snowfall) is expected in Astore, Diamir, Ghanche, Ghizer, Gilgit, Hunza, Shigar and Skardu from January 11-13 (Wednesday to Friday).

In Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK), rain (with moderate to isolated heavy snowfall) was expected in Bagh,
Bhimber, Hattian, Haveli, Kotli, Mirpur, Muzaffarabad, Neelum Valley, Poonch and Sudhnoti from January 11-13 (Wednesday to Friday).

Keeping in view the weather situation, all provincial disaster management authorities (PDMAs), Gilgit Baltistan Disaster Management Authority (GBDMA), State Disaster Management Authority (SDMA) and Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) Administration, National Highway Authority (NHA), National Highway and Motorway Police (NH&MP), Frontier Works Organization (FWO), Rescue-1122, line departments, Ministries and federal agencies were required to undertake measures as per respective mandate.

The NDMA advised that it was to be ensured by all concerned in addition to measures deemed appropriate as per on ground situation to make ensure widespread circulation of advisories and alerts to raise awareness and sensitize travellers and tourists. The concerned departments were to prepare general and area or region specific awareness campaigns and ensure wide spread propagation of likely threats and hazards. Moreover, they should also engage local communities at traditionally dangerous and hazard prone sites to enable round the clock monitoring and establish feedback mechanism for early warnings and alerts for at-risk population.

It also added that the PDMAs and DDMAs to arrange and preplace necessary inventory and other essentials at strategic locations or vulnerable choke points in coordination with NH&MP, NHA, FWO, local Construct and Works Departments (C&W), Rescue-1122 and line departments.

It also advised that the local administrations to assess and plan deployment of additional resources and exercise control over vehicle movement leading to and in vicinity of vulnerable areas, choke points, tourist spots and attractions to prevent losses and damages and save precious lives. Moreover, medical resources; paramedics, equipment and medicine should be deployed as per the vulnerability and risks identified in different regions to meet respective regional requirements.

The provincial departments and the concerned should also ensure that tourists, visitors, travelers in at-risk and affected areas will be apprised and forewarned about forecast weather and road conditions in coordination with NH&MP, law enforcement agencies (LEAs), NHA and FWO, ensure availability of emergency services personnel during the forecast period.

The travellers on Provincial and National Highways in at-risk/affected areas be forewarned of adverse conditions and may be detoured to safe waiting areas under guidance of respective PDMAs, Local Authorities, National Highway and Motorway Police, LEAs, etc., ensure immediate stocking of basic commodities especially in regions that get cut-off during winters snowfall, ensure round the clock monitoring of situation through emergencies operation centers (EOCs) with regular feedback to provincial and national EOCS (PEOCs and NEOC respectively). The tourists, visitors, and travelers to check PMD Weather Forecast for information on fog, snowfall, rain, high flows in nullahs and landslides etc. to assess road conditions from control rooms, helplines, websites, social media platforms of NH&MP, NHA, FWO, DDMAs and PDMAs before undertaking journey.

The NDMA also instructed all departments concerned that in case of any eventuality, twice daily and routine updates to be shared with the Authority.