DISASTER MANAGEMENT CENTRE, PORT-HARCOURT.
“Disaster management” can be defined as the range of activities designed to maintain control over disaster and emergency situations and to provide a framework for helping at-risk persons to avoid or recover from the impact of the disaster. Disaster management deals with situations that occur prior to, during, and after the disaster. Globally, there has been lots of disaster on land, air and sea, though these disasters may be natural or man-made, it has however led to the destruction of lives and properties worth billions of Naira.
In Nigeria, there have been instance of earth tremors in Ogun state in 1994, several cases of flood has occurred in Nigeria, in July 2012, 363 people killed, over 2,100,000 displaced, Areas affected include, Adamawa, Taraba, Plateau, and Benue state. On 2nd July 2012, many Nigerian coastal and inland cities experienced heavy rains, and residents of Lagos state were “gasping for breath” due to the flooding. In addition, there was a gridlock on major roads, causing people to cancel or postpone appointments they may have had.
Thousands of stranded commuters had to pay increased fares for the few bus drivers who were willing to risk travelling on the roads, and construction of work by the Nigerian government on the inner Oke-Afa Road took a “heavy toll.” In mid-July 2012, flooding in the Ibadan metropolis caused some residents at Challenge, Oke-Ayo, and Eleyele to flee from their residences and save their lives. The flooding also prevented some Christians from attending churches in the morning, while a few bridges caved in. The Nigerian government said that certain structures on waterways had to be demolished as a result of the flooding, while Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Bosun Oladele, announced that there weren’t any casualties from the flooding.
Although, most of the disasters that Nigerians face are generally preventable, such as aircraft crash, boat mishap, floods, landslides, fire out breaks, oil spillage etc, can actually be prevented.
Disaster is an event, natural or man-made, sudden or progressive, which impacts with such severity that the affected community or individual has to respond by taking exceptional measures.
Disaster Management is the systematic observation and analysis of disasters to improve measures relating to prevention, mitigation, preparedness, emergency response and recovery. It is also the range of activities designed to maintain control over disaster and emergency situations and to provide a framework for helping at-risk persons to avoid or recover from the impact of the disaster and deals with situations that occur prior to, during, and after the disaster.
The term “Disaster Management” encompasses the complete realm of disaster-related activities.
Traditionally people tend to think of disaster management only in terms of the post-disaster actions taken by relief and reconstruction officials; yet disaster management covers a much broader scope, and many modern disaster managers may find themselves far more involved in pre-disaster activities than in post-disaster response. This is because many persons who work in the development field, or who plan routine economic, urban, regional or agricultural development projects, have disaster management responsibilities. Disaster management also encompasses the field of emergency assistance and long-term maintenance for refugees and displaced persons.
The refugee field of disaster management is highly specialized and requires not only many development skills but also a broader awareness of political, legal, and humanitarian issues. The project is to design a Disaster Management Centre which will serve as a centre for the operational squad and aid for investigation, assistance and relief of people affected with disasters. The aim of this project is to provide disaster management knowledge and skills to enhance the understanding of good (and bad) disaster preparedness and response and their reasons for them.
This project introduces the main principles of Disaster Management, with a focus on disaster response in the developing world.
1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
THE NEED FOR A DISASTER MANAGEMENT CENTRE
Disaster means a progressive or sudden, widespread or localised, natural or human caused occurrence which causes or threatens to cause; Death, injury or disease, Damage to property, infrastructure or the environment, Disruption of the life of a community; and is of the magnitude that exceeds the ability of those affected by the disaster to cope with its effect using only their own resources. A disaster management centre is needed to:
To implement an integrated and coordinate disaster management policy that focuses on preventing or reducing the risk disasters, mitigating the severity of disasters, emergency preparedness, rapid and effective response to disasters and post disaster recovery.
To prepare the document that will identify risks, assess risks, risk response development and risk response control.
The purpose of centre is to outline policy and procedures for both proactive disaster prevention and the re-active disaster response and mitigation phases.
The disaster management centre functions are as follows:
Must specialise in issues concerning disasters within Rivers State.
Act as a repository and conduit for information concerning disasters.
Must perform it functions and exercise powers as stipulated section 44 of the Disaster Management Act, 57 of 2002.
Must liaise and co-ordinate its activities with those of National, State Management centres.
DISASTER MANAGEMENT CENTRE, PORT-HARCOURT
1.2 STATEMENT OF ARCHITECTURAL PROBLEMS
Architecture is an abstraction from nature and intuition with possibilities of aesthetic accompaniments for overall ambient satisfaction (Fashuyi, 2004). Nevertheless, this ideological perception must graft with sensitive issues bordering on culture, economy before Architecture can become acceptable in its right values. However, Architectural Education in Nigeria as presently structured is not responsive to her socio-economic environment. In fact, it is more suited to problems of urban environment of prosperous economies having nothing in common with the cultural and economic features of the country (Adesina, 1987). Architectural Education in Nigeria was inherited from the Beaux-Art concept of Western educational philosophy through the colonial mentors. This tendency is to provide aesthetically satisfying buildings, irrespective of function.
The design of the Disaster Management Centre will take into cognisance proper functional relationship between each section of the building to another; the site is located at an area that can be easily accessible from various parts of the state, helicopters are also available to ease rescue in parts of the states that cannot be easily assessable by land, the structure is responsive to the socio-economic environment in the state, the structure is aesthetically satisfying, the structure conforms to the building codes and zoning.
Therefore architectural problems of the Disaster Management Centre Are as follows:
The integration of architectural purpose, site, suitable spaces, technical systems and materials.
Inadequate ventilation and natural lightening
Primary and secondary circulation in and around the site.