SIMEX 2017: how to strengthen national logistics response capacities in Haiti

23 August 2017
emergency logistics in Haiti, logistics preparedness in Haiti

Within the Logistics Cluster preparedness project, Haiti has in consultation with Logistics Cluster partners been selected based on various risk indices, as one of six disaster-prone priority countries. The Global Logistics Cluster deployed a preparedness officer to work with WFP Haiti Country Office in supporting local authorities to augment national logistics response capacities in Haiti through trainings and simulation exercises.

The Simulation Exercise (SIMEX) held in Haiti on 9-10 August 2017, was led by the Haitian Government as part of the annual hurricane season exercise, an exercise meant to increase awareness and emergency preparedness by testing processes and procedures of the national disaster management system. One of the main aims of this national simulation exercise was to test the effectiveness of communication tools and coordination between the central, departmental and municipal Civil Protection (COUN / COUD and COUC), strengthening decision-making processes in relation to hurricane warning. The scenario consisted of a Hurricane level IV hitting Haiti’s South-East department; the Perado village’s Local Emergency Operation Center (COUL), the Marigot’s Communal Emergency Operation Center (COUC) and the cities of Jacmel and Port-au-Prince, where the Departmental and the National Emergency Operation Centers (COUD and COUN) sit, were activated for the exercise.

The SIMEX also included the hurricane warning mechanisms of the COUC Marigot on awareness raising and mobilisation of guards and resources needed for people in risky areas.
Actors such as airport and port authorities, police officers and representatives of the Ministry of public Works and Transport, participated in the simulation by merging their capacities to respond to the emergency, facilitating access to damaged hard to reach areas and rehabilitating telecommunications services. Also members from the Haitian Civil Protection Agency (DPC), the AGERCA (L’Alliance pour la Gestion des Risques et la Continuité des Activités) and other Internal and external observers, controllers and evaluators (from DPC, CRS and Logistics Cluster) were part of the scenario.

The Logistics Cluster’s Preparedness Officer facilitated the SIMEX and actively participated in the simulation together with the Department Delegate team and other national authorities, making the SIMEX a dynamic and enriching exercise for all participants.