Solomon Islands

Solomon Island: Earthquake Emergency Plan of Action (EPoA) DREF operation no MDRSB006


A. Situation analysis

Description of the disaster

An earthquake of magnitude 7.8 occurred at 4.39 am on 9 December 2016 near 62km west-south-west of Kirakira in Makira Province, Solomon Islands. More than 40 aftershocks have followed and are still being experienced throughout parts of the Solomon Islands.

The National Emergency Operation Centre in collaboration with the Provincial Emergency Operation Centres of the impacted provinces has narrowed the scope and scale of the disaster to only Makira and South Malaita as having experienced significant impacts with Guadalcanal impacts being considered minimal. The Solomon Islands government and its stakeholders and partners have deployed immediate relief items to impacted communities on Makira and Malaita. Makira Province has officially requested national support from the National Disaster Operations Committee (N-DOC) and relevant sectors/organisations. N-DOC Committees including those for Health, Education, Livelihood, Protection, Infrastructure and Camp Management have all activated mechanisms and actions in support of these requests. National Emergency Response Team (NERT) led by the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) consisting of Government Technical Agencies, Solomon Islands Red Cross and NGOs were deployed to Makira Province on the Police Patrol Boat Auki to support in:

  1. Assessment,

  2. Emergency supplies distribution,

  3. Water purification and distribution and

  4. Coordination of relief assistance at the Provincial Emergency Operations Centre.

After joint briefing with provincial authorities, the Police Patrol Boat deployed NERT to the southern part of the province covering Tetere, Apaoro, Apamatawa, Mwaniworo, Parigina, Aruraha, Marogu and Waigaga. The assessment in the Northern part commenced immediately after the joint briefing by other agencies. A total of five Provincial Emergency Response Teams (PERT) with NERT support conducted initial disaster assessments (IDA) in Southern and Western parts of Makira province. Malaita Provincial Disaster Committee deployed a Provincial Emergency Response Team (PERT) to Afio on 12 December, together with 3 NERT members and the SIRCS Dissemination officer for assessment. On-site coordination for response in Malaita was done from Afio (substation of South Malaita) as of 13 December 2016 until the IDA completed. As of 20 December, IDA was still ongoing in Makira and Malaita. The assessment teams from KiraKira returned on 20 December and SIRC is currently in the process of verifying data with the team.

At a multi-agency meeting called by government on 20 December 2016, the NDMO indicated that assessment reports will be ready for circulation in early January 2017. The below table draws on government and SIRC assessment and distribution data available as of 21 December: