Mega-hurricanes, new technologies and Regional Disaster Assistance Network dominate topics
2018, January 5, Barbados: In less than four months since the passing of the last of the five devastating hurricanes of 2017, representatives of the broader Caribbean maritime community gather in Panama on January 22, 23 and 24 to discuss the type and nature of the destruction; and, what technologies, systems and networks are now necessary to deal with future tropical hurricanes.
Registration of participants began this week for the inaugural Caribbean Port Management Workshop, being held at the Sheraton Grand Hotel in Panama. The three-day event, organized and presented by the Port Management Association of the Caribbean, Portside Caribbean and Caribbean Maritime University, has attracted the attention of a number of regional organizations. Coming soon after the historically violent hurricane season of 2017, this year’s Workshop provides an early opportunity to analyse and initiate plans and strategies ahead of 2018’s tropical storms.
Already, a number of cruise and cargo ports and terminals around the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico have registered or have indicated intentions to participate. Representatives of cruise ports and cargo terminals that were recently affected by destruction of land and port assets will share and analyse the type nature of port infrastructure damage and how defensive systems performed or failed under the onslaught of 2017’s mega-hurricanes. This opening workshop session is a prelude to a broader discussion to take place on the second day of Workshop 2018.
INTEGRATED REGIONAL DISASTER ASSISTANCE AND RELIEF NETWORK
In the broader discussion, a plenary on January 22, participants will discuss coordination of assistance and relief efforts following major disasters and, specifically, the building of an integrated Regional Disaster Assistance and Relief Network operating across the Caribbean region. Already, representative from organizations, including the Caribbean Climate Innovation Centre, CBCL Consulting Engineers Limited, Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA), American Salvage Association, Oil Spill Response Ltd., T & T salvage, Panama, DHI. The Inter-American Committee on Ports (OAS-CIP), the American Association of Port authorities (AAPA), the Gulf Ports Association of the Americas, and the Regional Logistics Centre for Humanitarian Assistance (CLRAH) have registered or confirmed intention to attend.
Workshop 2018 will begin, after formalities with Tropical Hurricanes: Recent Phenomena – Impacts, Destruction and Outlook. This will be presented by the Regional Chair of the world Meteorological Organization, Dr. Albert Martis. This will be followed by accounts and recollections of what exactly happened in 2017, as Caribbean port managers show and tell stories not reported by news media but which are vital for the planning and development of sustainable port facilities. Of special interest also is a presentation entitles A Regional Lifeline, by Dr Carlos Manuel Gomez Rudy, Administrator of the massive resource facility of the Regional Logistics Centre for Humanitarian Assistance, now under construction in Panama.
DESIGNING, SUSTAINING, EXPANDING HARBOURS AND PORTS The 2018 Caribbean Port Management Workshop will have three tracks (of workshop presentations) over its first two days. A total of 19 Workshop sessions will be presented in the three tracks. Two tracks will run simultaneously on Day 1, giving participants a choice of reviewing the latest satellite-based technology and systems for designing, sustaining or expanding harbours and port facilities or, otherwise, addressing disaster management and response strategies.
Day 2 will bring all participants into the discussion to establish a region-wide disaster assistance/relief network.
On Day 3, participants will leave the classroom setting at the Sheraton Hotel to visit three facilities, including the expanded Panama Canal and particularly its awesome new set of locks. This will be followed by a visit to the award-winning Manzanillo International Terminal (MIT) to see the latest in port operations technology and systems.
MIT is hosting the 2018 Caribbean Port Management Workshop in Panama.  more information at Port Management Association of the Caribbean. www.pmac-ports.com CONTACT: Mike Jarrett, firstname.lastname@example.org