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Bali Builds a Crisis Center

French Financed Center will Coordinate Island's Response to Natural and Man-Made Disasters.

(11/15/2008) Bali will soon have a Center for the Operational Coordination of Natural Disaster Relief (Pusat Pengendalian Operasi Penanggulangan Bencana), more succinctly known as "the crisis center".

The cornerstone for the new facility financed by the French Red Cross was installed on Wednesday, November 12, 2008, in a ceremony involving Jean Arnaud Etchanchu, the head of the French Red Cross; Kusmayanto Kadiman, the Indonesian Minister for Research and Technology; and Made Mangku Pastika, the governor of the province of Bali.

Located behind the Kesbanglimas office in Renon, the facility cost Rp. 5 billion (US$450,000) to build and equip. When completed, the facility will be staffed around the clock to monitor and coordinate responses to potential natural disasters such as floods, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions and earthquakes. The Center will also respond to manmade catastrophes such as terrorism and public disorder.

Staff by 24 personnel working on a round-the-clock basis, the crisis center will be equipped with the latest communication and monitoring technologies when it comes into formal operations on August 14, 2009.

Jean Arnaud Etchanchu told the press that the new center is being constructed with reinforced concrete and steel to withstand earthquakes. Etchanchu added, "in addition, the center will feature the latest technology able to communicate instantly with the Bureau of Metereology and Geophysics and secondary crisis centers across Bali.