News release

MIACC 98: Getting It Together

A wide range of people involved in disaster response will discuss their experiences next week when the Major Industrial Accidents Council of Canada (MIACC) holds a three-day forum in Halifax.

The theme of the conference is Getting It Together. Presenters will provide participants with an opportunity to learn, share experiences and develop strategies in prevention and response in the event of disasters in their communities. The conference is co-sponsored by MIACC and Emergency Preparedness Atlantic.

One of the highlights will be a session titled Collaborative Initiatives, which will examine how different agencies and communities worked together during the recent Swissair crash near Halifax. Another part of the presentation will be preparing for and responding to marine spills, and land-use planning near pipelines.

The crash of Swissair Flight 111 will also be examined in a workshop on response and recovery to a major marine incident and a case study on critical incident stress management.

A session on community planning for emergencies will cover last winter's ice storm, an overview of response plans in the case of an emergency at Confederation Bridge between New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island, and dealing with emergencies at a natural gas pipeline.

The conference will also look at developing a plan in the event a marine spill or emergency affects the livelihood of a community, and tools to enhance community preparedness.

Mike Lester, director of the Nova Scotia Emergency Measures Organization and MIACC board member, said if we have learned one thing from disasters, it is that working together and sharing information is extremely important.

"This conference gives us an opportunity to sit down and share information about recent events that help us prevent similar ones in the future and be able to response more effectively to disasters."

The conference will be held Oct. 18-20 at the Westin Nova Scotian, 1181 Hollis St., Halifax. For more information, visit the MIACC website at http://www.miacc.ca .

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Contact:

Sandy Phillips
Emergency Measures Organization 902-422-2244 or 902-424-5620 E-mail:
ngr                   Oct. 15, 1998                12:35 p.m.