Building code to be updated | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, March 06, 2010 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, March 06, 2010

Int'l Earthquake Symposium

Building code to be updated

The government has taken an initiative to update the building code considering the fact that the country runs the risks of large-scale earthquakes, Food and Disaster Management Minister Abdur Razzaque said yesterday.
"It is regretting that the building code is not adequately followed. However, we are trying to ensure strict enforcement of it. Besides, we are updating the building code," he said at the inaugural session of a two-day symposium.
Bangladesh Earthquake Society (BES) and the Department of Civil Engineering of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet) jointly organised the Third International Earthquake Symposium at the latter's auditorium.
The government is also framing a disaster management law, draft of which will be tabled in the next session of parliament, he said.
Quoting the data of Bangladesh Meteorological Department, Razzaque said the country experienced 115 mild earthquakes only in three years and the epicentre of 37 tremors was inside the country.
Referring to the preparations to reduce the damage, the minister said equipment worth Tk 30 crore have been procured and handed over to the Armed Forces and Department of Fire Service and Civil Defence.
Purchase of more equipment is under process, he said, adding that the process of training 62,000 volunteers in three years is going on.
Damages could be minimised with good preparations and that is the only thing that the government could do, he said, adding that the recent earthquake in Chile was much stronger than that of Haiti, but the damage in Chile were less because of their better preparations.
BES President Prof Dr Jamilur Reza Choudhury said Dhaka will witness major damage if any large-scale earthquake takes place.
The Comprehensive Disaster Management Programme (CDMP) has done a good study on earthquake, he said.
The preparation plan that the CDMP has designed for different ministries must be followed vigorously, he added.
Buet Vice Chancellor Prof Dr AMM Safiullah, Pro Vice Chancellor Prof Dr M Habibur Rahman, BES Secretary General Prof Dr Munaz A Noor and organising committee chairman Prof Dr TM Al-Hussaini also spoke.
Experts from India, Japan, the USA, China, Malaysia and Taiwan are taking part in the symposium.

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