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Air drill to improve Guangzhou's defence capacity
Latest Updated by 2006-09-18 15:41:41
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A grand anti-air raid drill was organized in Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong Province, over the weekend, with an aim to test and further improve the city's capacity to deal with possible and sudden air raids as well as terrorist attacks.

"The maneuver, which attracted more than 20,000 participants, has been, so far, the largest anti-air-raid drill in the city since 1949," according to an official from Guangzhou Office of Civil Air Defence.

In addition to local officials, workers, students and retired residents, the participants included 1,300 professional anti-air-raid personnel, anti-riot police, fire fighters and medical staff, said Zeng Ruda, deputy-director of Guangzhou Office of Civil Air Defence.

The maneuver, codenamed Guangzhou Tiandun, started at 3:40 pm in Guangzhou's Tianhe District when the city simulated a raid in which many of the city's oil depots, bridges, water and electricity supply facilities were destroyed by air bombs.

Military soldiers fought back the mock enemy fighter jets and special personnel immediately arrived on the scene to evacuate local residents and rescue the wounded.

All the city's anti-air-raid alarms were sounded. The drill participants also received special mobile phone messages telling of the raid and urging evacuation or movement to safe areas.

The drill did not affect people's lives or the normal operation of the city's metro, bus, train and other public transportation services.

Ling Weixian, executive vice-mayor of Guangzhou, was the drill's chief commander.

"The successful one-hour drill that ended at 4:40 pm has showcased Guangzhou's improving capacity to handle the air raids and other emergencies," said Zeng.

It is the seventh anti-air-raid drill that has taken place in the southern Chinese metropolis since 2000.

Guangzhou's city government has augmented 35 per cent of its anti-air-raid alarm facilities since the beginning of the year, he said.

"This year's additional facilities have helped the city form an advanced, reliable and rationally distributed anti-air-raid alarm system," said Zeng.

The advanced anti-air-raid alarm system covers all of the city's eight districts and two suburban cities in Guangzhou, Zeng added.

With the help of the advanced anti-air-raid alarm system, relevant departments will be able to quickly evacuate local residents and rescue victims when the southern metropolis is attacked.

Wang Xiaojun, a local white collar worker, said the anti-air-raid drill was necessary to improve local awareness of anti-air-raid protocols as well as preventing terrorist attacks.

"Given the international status quo, we should be well prepared for any possible emergencies, although Guangzhou is not a major target for terrorist groups in the world," he told China Daily.

Editor: Yan

By: Source: China Daily Website
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