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Exercise in Iğdır Within the Framework of National Radiation Emergency Plan 20 June 2019

Govt. Turkey
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The Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD) continues to prepare against natural disasters as well as man caused disasters. Within the framework of the National Radiation Emergency Plan (URAP), AFAD organized a wide ranging exercise with the participation of national and local service groups.

As a part of its goal to test protective measures and other response activities in case of local or international radiation emergency cases, AFAD organized full scale Iğdır exercise between June 19 and 20 with the participation of local and national service groups within the framework of National Radiation Emergency Plan (URAP).

URAP was prepared as a result of the cooperation between AFAD and Turkish Atomic Energy Authority (TAEK) with the intention of planning activities at the national or provincial level in case of local or international radiation emergency cases. URAP was approved by the President’s Office on 06.04.2019 and came into effect.

According to exercise scenario, as a result of a disaster experienced in Metsamor nuclear power plant located in Armenia and close to 8 villages of Iğdır, residents of Orta Alican village close to nuclear plant were transferred to tent camps at the garden of the Provincial Disaster and Emergency Directorate by 112 Emergency Service, National Medical Rescue Team (UMKE) an gendarme teams.

First, disaster victims went through radiologic tests and decontamination and finally were disinfected. Later, they were examined by medical teams and put under physical observation in the tent hospitals.

Total of 83 personnel from AFAD’s Iğdır, Van, Samsun, Bursa and Sakarya Regional directorates and from the AFAD headquarters, 2 mobile decontamination vehicles, one coordination truck, 20 response vehicles and 40 tents took part in the exercise while a total of 252 personnel, 76 vehicles, 5 ambulances and 43 tents from other authorities and organizations participated in the exercise.

Apart from AFAD and TAEK teams, Erzurum Regional Directorate of Information Technology and Communication Authority, Erzurum 10th Regional Directorate of Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, Regional Police Department, Regional Gendarme Commandership, Regional Health Directorate, Regional Directorate of Agriculture and Forestry, Regional Directorate of Family, Labor and Social Services, Regional Immigration Authority, Iğdır Municipality, Highways 184th Regional Directorate, Aras EDAŞ, Turkish Red Crescent Iğdır Regional Directorate and civil society organizations active in Iğdır participated in the exercise. The exercise included announcing a nuclear emergency to the public, evacuation activities, decontamination at acceptance and transfer centers, health and accommodation services, radiologic watch and sample collection from the field.

Iğdır Governor Enver Ünlü said during his speech during the exercise that response during the disaster moment was an important part of the exercise adding that, “This was a very important opportunity to see our capacity, means and abilities as well as shortcomings. Due to this reason, I think it was very important. Reaction of society in cases of emergency and disasters is the indicator of modernity level of this society. Success of disaster and emergency scenarios depends on the sensitivity and devoted effort of all state organs and nongovernmental organizations.”

Governor Ünlü as well as Deputy Head of AFAD İsmail Palakoğlu, Head of Civil Defense Department Sadi Ergin, Head of Planning and Risk Reduction Department Yusuf Aksu and other executives visited tents and received information about the activities.