All Systems Go

Though most are agreed that a flexible, multi-hazard warning system is what Sri Lanka needs, it might have to be put into law to ever really take effect. Though most are agreed that a flexible, multi-hazard warning system is what Sri Lanka needs, it might have to be put into law to ever really take effect.

Local officials have been falling over each other to deflect the blame as to where they were when crisis hit and why all seismic detection systems seem to have failed.

Or even, why no lessons were learnt from Sri Lanka’s history of floods and landslides, the last of which hit two years ago, killing 235 people in six districts.

Though, much of the paperwork has been done, including plans to identify flood, landslide and other disaster prone areas, there hasn’t been any way to take it to grassroots.

“Almost all landslide stricken districts are known and that information is already with relevant government officials at provincial and district offices,” Project Manager for the Sri Lanka Urban Multi-Hazard Disaster Mitigation Project, Lionel Hewawasam says.

Hewawasam heads a USAID funded project set up to build capacity from school