“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.
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.
Disaster Management is an enormous task. Disasters are not confined to any particular location; neither do they disappear as quickly as they appear. Therefore, it is imperative that there is proper management to optimize efficiency of planning and response. Due to limited resources, collaborative efforts at the governmental, private and community levels are necessary. This level of collaboration requires a coordinated and organized effort to mitigate against, prepare for, respond to, and recover from emergencies and their effects in the shortest possible time.
The motivation of this project steams from:
- The absolute necessity for such a project: Over the years, lives have been lost in natural and man-made disaster primarily due to absence of a disaster management centre or slow response of rescue team.
- The wealth of knowledge, which the project adds to existing information on architectural building types.
- The sense of comfort and security inspired by the project, being from the riverine area in the Niger Delta region where the terrain is difficult and inter-city transport is mostly done by boat, the potential for boat mishaps is rather high.
- To reduce subsequent insurance claims and compensation on government and insurance companies.
- The passion to create an avenue that will aid for relief to all disaster victims.
- To create awareness for the need of disaster management.
1.4 Aims of Study
- To provide a facility that will improve response to disasters for an initial period after which other sources would assist.
- To reduce confusion on the part of all personnel concern in disasters.
- To enhance the role of rapid deployment of its personnel in response to emergency
- Preventing or reducing the risk of disasters and mitigating the severity or consequences of disasters
- A rapid and effective response to disasters and post- disaster recovery and rehabilitation.
- To ensure the survival of the maximum possible number of victims, keeping them in the best possible health in the circumstances.
- To re-establish self-sufficiency and essential services as quickly as possible for all population groups, with special attention to those whose needs are greatest: the most vulnerable and underprivileged.
- To repair or replace damaged infrastructure and regenerate viable economic activities. To do this in a manner that contributes to long-term development goals and reduces vulnerability to any future recurrence of potentially damaging hazards.
- In cases involving population displacements (due to any type of disaster) the aim is to find durable solutions as quickly as possible, while ensuring protection and assistance as necessary in the meantime.
1.5 Objectives of the Study
- To create a building for impacting training in disaster prevention, mitigation, preparedness, relief and rehabilitation and also to undertake research studies, documentation and development of database.
- Organize state and regional level conferences/workshops in disaster management and related subjects.
- To develop and encourage NGO's network in the state to manage disasters in the state.
- To reduce or avoid the human, physical, and economic losses suffered by individuals, by the society, and by the country at large
- To reduce personal suffering and to speed recovery.
1.6 Scope Of Study
This project provides, to a satisfactory level, all the facilities that are needed in the disaster management centre for optimum performance
to manage disaster. There are provisions for effective control, relief and rescue of disasters by mitigating, preparedness, response and recovery.
The scope of the project is limited to the following;
- The design of the Administrative building
- The clinic
- A staff residential building
- Hanger for helicopter
1.6.1 The Site
This project involves the design of a Centre that aids for Disaster Management, thus, due to the amphibiotic nature of its function, the facility would require a site that enhances the marine and land base operation, and hence, it is located within the southern section of Port Harcourt. It can also be accessible through various pedestrian routes emanating from the neighbouring residential zones. This will be dutifully respected in the cause of designing.
The site is in close proximity to the State secretariat, the Nigerian marine base, Trans Amadi Industrial Layout, Orobum Vimmage (now called Obunabali). Ogbunabali bound the site on the East, the far North by Trans Amadi Industrial Layout, to the West by the Amadi flat and old GRA Residential Quarters and the South by Marine Base.
The exterior element in the site include: