The German Red Cross and its Vietnamese counterpart have begun to train residents of six communes in the central province of Thua Thien Hue in risk reduction during disasters.
One of the training activities on October 11 in Phong Thu Commune, Phong Dien District, involved responding to a scenario in which a man has been hit by a falling tree and is bleeding heavily from his forehead while another man lies injured nearby.
A response team rushes to their rescue with a stretcher. Its members dress the wound, immobilize a fractured leg, and carry the two injured persons to a nearby health center.
The activities, funded by the German Federal Foreign Office and targeting disaster-prone communes in the province, were observed by German State Secretary Hans-JÃ¼rgen Beerfeltz.
Others included modifying houses to protect them from extreme weather, an evacuation exercise involving women, men, children, and the elderly, and a drowning rescue.
Teachers were trained to cope with disasters until aid arrived, and are expected to instruct their students in turn.
"We have built capacity in the community, especially among students and teachers," Doan Van Lai, chairman of the district Red Cross, said.
The project also helped upgrade the communes' public-address system to facilitate early warning, built an evacuation bridge for a village that has been frequently cut off by floods, and provided first aid and search and rescue equipment and rescue boats.
Officials estimated that 28,000 people in six communes would benefit from the project. Its managers ensured that 30 percent of the trainees were women.
Vietnam, with its long coastline, is among countries that will be most severely affected by climate change.
The central region is hit by 65 percent of the typhoons and floods that occur in Vietnam. Many places in the region face floods and typhoons three to four times a year on average, and the number is rising.
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