Advanced disaster monitoring and response system in Indonesia operational

System at Humanitarian Assistance Coordinating Center is based on Pacific Disaster Center's platform

University of Hawaiʻi
Ray Shirkhodai, (808) 891-0525
Executive Director, Pacific Disaster Center
Jamie Swan, (808) 843-2534
Communications and Outreach Specialist, Pacific Disaster Center
Posted: Feb 13, 2013

Officials examine earthquake and tsunami information.
Officials examine earthquake and tsunami information.
The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has completed installation of and training on their state-of-the-art Disaster Monitoring and Response System (DMRS) at the Humanitarian Assistance Coordinating Center (AHA Center) in Jakarta, Indonesia. With DMRS operational, ASEAN is better able to reduce the region’s vulnerability to disaster and to support preparedness and response efforts across national borders.
DMRS, based on the Pacific Disaster Center’s DisasterAWARE platform, provides advanced disaster monitoring, warning, and impact assessment. The DMRS application further supports evidence-based decision making by integrating dynamic hazard data along with hazard modeling capabilities and hundreds of baseline, historical, and observational datasets important for effective mitigation, preparedness, and response efforts. DMRS supports the U.S. “turn to the Pacific” policy and President Obama’s commitment to U.S. engagement in the region’s multilateral architecture to ensure regional peace, stability, and prosperity.
According to PDC Executive Director Ray Shirkhodai, "DMRS is more than just computer software, with its multi-hazard information sharing and integrated impact modeling capabilities, it is a critical tool enabling decision makers to most effectively prepare for and respond to major disasters."
The deployment of DMRS is a capacity-enhancement project funded by USAID, and is the latest outcome of years of collaboration between Pacific Disaster Center (PDC) and the ASEAN Committee on Disaster Management (ACDM) in disaster risk reduction. The development of DMRS was conducted in close coordination with ASEAN Secretariat, AHA Centre Task Force members, and ACDM international dialog partners from Japan. The system was customized to meet specific ASEAN requirements. The year-long project included development of operational procedures for use of DMRS to coordinate responses to major events within the ASEAN regional as well as delivery of training – including “Train-the-Trainer” – to staff from both the AHA Centre and Member state National Disaster Management Offices. Other custom versions of DisasterAWARE are in use by U.S. federal and state agencies, and internationally by the governments of Thailand and Vietnam—with strong interest also expressed by Indonesia, Philippines, and others.
Pacific Disaster Center (PDC), a program managed by the University of Hawai‘i since 2006, was established by the U.S. government in 1996. PDC’s mission is to provide applied information research and analysis support for the development of more effective policies, institutions, programs and information products for the worldwide disaster management and humanitarian assistance community. The Center’s evolving approach to emergency management shifts the emphasis from being reactive—focusing on response and recovery operations—to being proactively focused on mitigation and preparedness. This strategy is built on the United Nations approach to loss reduction that acknowledges public awareness and community partnerships, better assessments of natural hazard risks, and preventative action priorities as critical components that minimize identified risks. The overall goal is to promote disaster management as an integral part of national-to-local economic and social development to foster disaster-resilient communities.