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Angra do Heroísmo ,  April 05, 2011

Region increasingly prepared to respond to disasters

The Azores are increasingly prepared to respond to disasters due to the ongoing development of procedures and civil protection measures.

The statement was made by the Regional Secretary for Science Technology and Infrastructures in Angra do Heroísmo during the presentation of the Landslide Prevention Plan, a new tool to respond to landslide situations.

“With this plan, we can demonstrate that we are becoming better prepared to respond to the demands of the special features of the Azores from a seismic, volcanic and precipitation standpoint,” stressed José Contente.

The Regional Secretary said that other specific plans will be implemented, comprising the areas of greatest risk in the Archipelago, such as the cases of earthquakes and floods. 

 “We are moving ahead with special plans to respond to specific problems,” José Contente said, adding that this set of rules and guidelines “will improve the response of the “Azores Regional Civil Protection and Fire Service” (SRPCBA), which goes beyond the requirements of the Directives issued by the European Union.”

According to the Regional Secretary, the Azores are complying with “the three European principles,” recommended for these situations, which are solidarity, subsidiarity and prevention.

José Contente also alerted for the need of testing municipal civil protection plan “on a continuous base” for enhancing the effectiveness of responses in case of catastrophe.

In this context, the Prevention Plan for Landslides is activated via automatic messages that are sent to a team of 27 experts who, in a partnership with the Portuguese Air Force, are travel to any part of the archipelago in a maximum time of 1 hour.

This team is made up of firefighters, SRPCBA, military, security forces, including GNR (Republican National Guard) teams with search dogs, members of the Institute for Social Work and of the Regional Directorates for Health and Housing.

The scheme envisaged in the plan includes the successive activation of means of initial, municipal, regional, national and even international response in accordance with the gravity of the situation. 


Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

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