Source UNJLC
Countries Pakistan
Document type Other
Publication date 17/10/2005
UNJLC Pakistan Earthquake
BULLETIN No. 4 (Day 12)
As of 1800 hours local,  October 20th, 2005

UNJLC Bulletins aim to provide a clear and concise regular overview of the situation as it exists in the earthquake-affected area of Pakistan and contiguous areas with regards to logistics matters affecting immediate relief work by the humanitarian community. They focus on practical issues that affect the welfare of the afflicted populace and related humanitarian work such as the status of transport routes for humanitarian supplies and personnel into the area, relevant administrative or commercial developments, air (including strategic airlift and helicopter operations), Customs and immigration matters, and availability of accommodation and fuels. They further seek to identify major issues for the humanitarian community and other interested parties, to provide relevant background and constructive recommendations on current issues, and to alert responsible parties to emerging issues. This bulletin will be produced daily until further notice.


1.   Logistics Organisation

2.   Free Transport

3.   Transport Rates

4.   Helicopter Deployed

5.   The NATO Air Bridge

6.   UNHAS Passenger Service

7.   Field accomodation

8.   Road Access

1.   Logistics Organisation

Referring to the aid sent so far into the affected area and evacuation of injured people out:

This is not enough. We have never had this kind of logistical nightmare ever. We thought the tsunami was the worst we could get. This is worse.

Jan Egeland, UN Emergency Relief Co-ordinator
Geneva, as reported by BBC Online

Twelve days after the October 8th earthquake, the enormity and immense complexity of the humanitarian logistics operation and the co-ordination required to make it  as effective as possible, is now being appreciated widely.

In order to more effectively address the challenges, given the pressing human need and narrow window of opportunity, the Logistic Cluster (see Bulletin 1 of October 17th, page 1) has been split into two: a smaller, strategic group to look at emerging issues with a timeframe beyond the immediate future and to plot an overall concept of operations; and a larger operational, day-to-day group to address current issues of immediate concern. Both groups meet at UNJLC's Islamabad premises and are chaired by WFP or, in WFP's absence, UNJLC. The strategic group meets three times a week at 7:30pm, Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. The operational group meets daily 8:30am.

Major NGO's are particularly welcome. All agencies with a logistics plan are invited to share these with the strategic group so that economies of scale may be identified and a coherent, co-ordinated and ultimately more economical and effective overall logistics effort obtained.

2.   Free Transport

Atlas Logistique, a French NGO operating in Pakistan and Afghanistan for the past two years, has a mandate to provide, to the extent possible, free land transportation for NGO cargos throughout Pakistan. It is presently investigating transport contracts. Contact may be made with Mr. Christophe Vergeron on +92 (0)301 532-2112 or Further details will be provided as they become available.

3.   Transport Rates

Increased demand for overland transport services to the affected area is leading to higher cargo rates as trucking firms take commercial advantage of the situation.

To assist in maintaining fair prices, World Food Programme (WFP), being one of the largest users of logistical resources in the emergency, has kindly offered to share its transport rates with other members of the humanitarian community.

UNJLC is convening a meeting between WFP, the International Organisation for Migration and Atlas Logistique, being major users of trucking capacity, to compare rates in the market. This will lead to the setting of benchmarks that will be published, allowing other organisations to better negotiate realistic rates.

4.   Helicopters Deployed

A total of about 69 rotary-wing machines are presently deployed with up to 24 in the pipeline. The estimated presently deployed fleet of less than 5-tonne capacity machines is 60 aircraft, 39 of which are Pakistani cargo military, as below. Heavier machines are nine aircraft, being four CH-53 Super Stallions - two each from the US and German military - and five US CH-47 Chinooks.

Currently operational helicopters of up to 5-tonne cargo capacity UNHAS IFRC US Military US Gov't  Afghanistan Pakistan Japan Agha Khan Total
Mi-8 MTV 5   2        
Mi-17         4 5     9
UH-60 Blackhawk     3     5     8
SA-330 Puma           1     1
Bell 412           26     26
H-3 Sea King           2     2
UH-1 Huey             3 2 5

A further 19 helicopters of up to 5-tonne cargo capacity, comprising 18 Mi-8 MTV's (10 UNHAS, 8 IFRC) and a South African SA-330 Puma are in the pipeline. Five heavier machines, comprising two UNHAS Mi-26's and three Royal Air Force CH-47 Chinooks are also en route to Pakistan.

5.   The NATO Air Bridge

As reported in Bulletin 2 of October 18th, the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) has established an air bridge to Pakistan, primarily Islamabad. This will use C-17, C-130, Boeing 707 and other aircraft operating largely out of Incirlik in Turkey, carrying mainly tents. Several other loads have already been carried as previously reported. Over a ten hour period starting in the afternoon of October 20th, five C-130's - one each from France, Italy and Greece and two from the UK - and one 707 from Luxembourg will carry about 65 tonnes of shelter material for UNHCR into Islamabad. The airbridge is expected to continue operating for some weeks and provides an important strategic airlift capacity and budgetary relief for key agencies.

UNJLC has established contact and a method of operation with the NATO team in Islamabad and the European Area Disaster Response Co-ordination Centre at NATO headquarters. A procedure for requesting airlift is being developed and will be published on the UNJLC website as soon as it is finalised. The point of contact in UNJLC Islamabad is Brian Isbell, +92(0)300 856-0164,

The airbridge is intended primarily for the transport of Government-sponsored humanitarian goods from NATO member nations but NATO has agreed to consider requests from UN agencies and third parties on a case-by-case basis. All such requests are to be channelled through UNJLC Islamabad, specifically Brian Isbell.

UNJLC is presently resolving initial problems with the release of such consignments to the consignee by the Pakistani Army. With the aircraft landing at the Chaklala Air Base, the landing and unloading is overseen by the Pakistani Air Force, but the custody of the cargo, once unloaded, passes to the Pakistani Army. Early indications are that the handover process will work as intended.

6.   UNHAS Passenger Service

UNHAS has established a schedule to carry humanitarian workers by helicopter into main parts of the affected area, servicing Muzaffarabad and Manshera from Islamabad. These flights are available free-of-charge on a space available basis to all UN agencies, responding NGO's and donor country personnel. Passenger bookings may be done only at UNHAS premises at House 1, Street 2, F-8/3, Islamabad. This is about 50 metres south of the intersection of Marghalla Road and Khostan Road.

Further destinations may be serviced once further UNHAS helicopters are operational in the coming days.

7.   Field Accommodation

Swedish Rescue Services Agency is establishing a 60-person camp at Muzaffarabad. This will be expandable to a capacity of 100 and should be fully operational within a week. However, it may be possible to find accommodation at the camp in the next few days.

Three more camps are in the pipeline, a 30-person one from Denmark which was expected to arrive today, and two similar ones from Norway, expected to arrive within 48 hours. The Danish camp will be deployed at Mansehra. It is understood that the locations for the two Norwegian camps have yet to be finalised but they are likely to be established at Shangla or Batagram, or possibly Bagh.

Bookings are not possible. All accommodation is on a first- come-first-served basis.

Irish NGO GOAL is operating at Bagh and may be able to offer assistance with advice or accommodation there.
All other NGO's operational at other locations in the field that may be able to offer field accommodation to colleague NGO workers are asked to advise UNJLC at

8.   Road Access

According to UNDSS (UN Department of Safety and Security), the status of access for the main routes in the North West Frontier Province has remained largely unchanged over the past two days. With ongoing tremors in the area and hillsides made unstable by the main earthquake, small landslides continue to cut off routes temporarily. However, the Pakistani Army has deployed earthmoving equipment that can generally clear major routes within a day. Blockages to lesser routes are cleared less rapidly but may be overcome by passage on foot or by pack animals.

It is expected that the humanitarian community will have to deploy avalanche control units within less than two months.