Building a Community of Prepared Citizens

Building a Community of Prepared Citizens

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Residents in Punggol caught a glimpse of what a terrorist attack could look like in a neighbourhood during a counter terrorism exercise for Punggol Coast Emergency Preparedness (EP) Day. The exercise was held at SAFRA Punggol and showcased a simulation of a gunmen attack as residents went about their daily activities. The attack scenario demonstrated the importance for the public to learn key survival skills and to respond accordingly.

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 Punggol Coast Grassroots Adviser Dr Janil Puthucheary with SCDF and SPF personnel, and volunteers at Punggol Coast EP Day at SAFRA Punggol

EP Day is a signature SGSecure programme to train citizens to be better prepared in times of crisis. Trained volunteers [pictured above] alongside Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) and Singapore Police Force (SPF) personnel demonstrated survival skills such as "Run, Hide, Tell" and improvised first aid such as "Tie, Press, Tell", when caught in a dangerous situation such as a gunmen attack. The scenario [shown below] displayed how the police and community can work together to reduce casualties and handle the threat at hand.

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Punggol Coast Grassroots Advisor Dr Janil Puthucheary [pictured above with the SCDF team] was the Guest-Of-Honour at the event. In his speech, Dr Janil emphasised that citizens are the first line of response in times of danger. He reiterated the SGSecure message for the public to be better prepared and to know what to do in an emergency; to "Hide, Run, Tell". He also brought up the importance of working together as a team and to be aptly prepared and "be ready to do what needs to be done, which means that we need to be prepared together as one Singapore".

Residents were given the chance to learn critical life-saving skills such as Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR), basic first aid, and a quick primer on how to use a fire extinguisher.

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Local Punggol residents who attended the Punggol Coast EP Day at SAFRA Punggol noted that as the public, they are the first line of defence.

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For Willy Tanujoyo and his family [pictured above], it was their first-time learning about emergency preparedness. Mr Tanujoyo said that the hands-on approach and various channels of information were key for children to learn what to do in times of danger. "It's very informative and the booths allowed them to interact effectively while understanding that they don't have to be afraid of what to do or expect," he added.

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    Ken Lee [pictured above] found the event to be very informative and noted that there are many things that individuals can do to keep their family and friends safe and secure. "It is good that everyone has to get through the various stations, in order to get the goodie bag. It encourages people to stop and listen to what the personnel say and learn how they go about helping and make a safer Singapore", said Mr Lee.

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    To boost community preparedness, EP Day is always held at heartlands as a way to bring across the message and for the public to learn more about essential emergency skills and SGSecure. The SGSecure movement was first launched by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in September 2016 and aims to get all Singaporeans involved in the fight against terror.

    The SGSecure movement has become a timely and important aspect for many Singaporeans since more than 70 per cent admitted that they are not trained to perform life-saving skills, including CPR and first aid, according to a Sunday Times survey [shown below] that was conducted in September 2017.

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     Graphic taken from Sunday Times

    So, how can we as citizens be prepared? The infographic below outlines the key numbers we should remember and the appropriate responses in times of crisis.

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