On 8 July 2019 at 01.00 p.m. Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-ocha and Cabinet observed the Integrated Disaster Management Exercise (IDMEx 2019) in a case of Tsunami Disaster with 6 functional exercises stations at Phukets Deep Sea Port, Wichit Sub-district, Mueang District, Phuket Province. Mrs. Aree Sansom, PPAO Deputy Chief Administrator and Mrs. Wasana Sriwilai, Director of PPAO Division of Public Works also participated in this event.
Interior Minister General Anupong Paojinda, as the National Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Commissioner, said the National Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Division (NDPM) by the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation, Ministry of Interior together with military units, the civilian units, related agencies and 6 coastal provinces of the Andaman Sea organized the Integrated Disaster Management Exercise (IDMEx 2019) in the case of tsunami disaster with 6 functional exercises stations during 4th -8th July 2019, at the Phukets Deep Sea Port, Wichit Sub-district, Mueang District, Phuket Province.
The government has emphasized the emergency preparedness and response processes especially the tsunami disaster. The IDMEx 2019 is considered the first of a national drill in the integrated preparedness and response of tsunami disaster by aiming to test the mechanism of the alarm notification process, command to fix problems, coping and evacuation including the comprehensive management of the tsunami impacts. It is to build confidence among people and tourists in the potential and readiness of public sector disaster management and it is a drill for serious disaster management (Level 4).This drill was an underwater seismic simulation of the Nicobar Islands and a massive tsunami hit the Andaman Sea coast severely resulting in the main communication system being unable to use. Buildings, utilities and ecology were damaged and a lot of local people and tourists injured and lost. The drills on 24th June 8th July 2019 divided into 3 forms covering all missions of disaster management both a drill of warning notification and evacuate people at risk areas of 6 provinces of the Andaman Sea coast by focusing on testing the warning system and rehearsing according to the tsunami response plans of the local authorities and encouraging people to learn safe evacuation skills and tabletop exercises. The exercises were to enhance understanding of the mission and duties of each agency under the laws and plans for disaster prevention and mitigation. Specific duties exercise was to rehearse a process of linking command, directing and coordinating under the same command and operation. For the functional exercises of 6 stations at Phukets Deep Sea Port is a test of personnel readiness, equipment and disaster machinery, communication systems including the role of volunteers in participating in disaster prevention and mitigation in order to make management in emergencies more effective.
In addition, IDMEx 2019 is considered as a way to encourage all sectors and departments to understand their roles under the National Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Plan and Provincial Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Plan and Specific Action Plan. It is also a search for problems and constraints that are weaknesses and factors of success so as to improve and develop the tsunami management approach including the model for furthering the countrys emergency management for maximum efficiency.