Contingency Plan for Earthquake Response in Major Urban Centres - Scale-Up Activation – Update May 2019



Taking into consideration lessons learned and good practices from the 2015 Gorkha earthquake in Nepal, the Government of Bangladesh, together with the UN RC and members of the international community agreed to focus preparedness efforts on the occurrence of a large-scale earthquake in Bangladesh in line with the UNDAF 2016-2020 and HCTT annual workplans. According to the latest information and research available, the large urbanization centres of Dhaka, Chattogram and Sylhet are likely to experience the greatest impact of the event in terms of destruction and number of people affected. Based on the average projections of a ‘worst case’ scenario, the possible humanitarian consequences include the loss of life for 547,855 persons [164,570 men, 150,050 women, 121,095 boys, 112,139 girls], injuries for 726,521 persons [240,045 men, 205,866 women, 150,530 boys, 130,079 girls] and the displacement of 15,770,568 persons [4,841,962 men, 4,353,948 women, 3,436,345 boys, 3,138,313 girls]. A total of 178,794 disabled persons would directly be impacted as well. This is exacerbated by significant estimated damage to roads and public infrastructure impacting access to public services to affected communities. To optimize the speed, volume and quality of critical humanitarian assistance, the HCTT/UNCT has developed this contingency plan according to the RAPID approach to:

  1. Reach a common understanding of earthquake risk to ensure early action is taken when required;

  2. Establish a minimum level of earthquake preparedness across clusters;

  3. Build the basis for a joint HCTT response strategy to meet the needs of affected people in the first 6 weeks to 3 months of a response;

  4. Define considerations for detailed contingency planning on the basis of the worst-case scenario, especially around access and logistics;

  5. Minimize the consequences of secondary disasters after earthquake.