Emergency preparedness and response communication in dealing with the effects of hazards during the increase of the water level of the Bili-Bili Dam

Rahmita Saleh, Yusmanizar Yusmanizar

Abstract

The high intensity rainfall in the South Sulawesi region at January 2019 resulted in a rise in the Water Level (TMA) of the Bili-Bili Dam and was set in Alert status with elevation +101.87 meters. This is the highest elevation in the Dam operation record since 1999. The increase in elevation has caused managers to carry out an early warning system and open the spillway that have affected floods in the Gowa Regency area. The purpose of this study is to provide an overview of the forms of emergency preparedness and response communication carried out by the Balai Besar Wilayah Sungai Pompengan Jeneberang (BBWSPJ) as the manager of the Bili-Bili Dam in dealing with the effects of hazards during an increase in TMA. The type of research used is qualitative with a case study approach using in-depth interviews and document analysis. The results of the study indicate that communication planning for handling TMA has been prepared in the Emergency Action Plan. Preparedness communication was carried out when there was an indication that the TMA was moving up at elevation +99.45 (Normal) on January 21, 2019 by starting to operate a warning system through verbal notification using loudspeakers to the downstream community that the spillway would be opened. Emergency response communication was carried out when there was an increase from Normal to Wary to Alert through coordination with government to urge the public to avoid the impact of the overflow and to evacuate the victims.

 

Keywords: Flood; Bili-Bili Dam; Crisis Communication; Preparedness; Emergency Response

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