"Rapid-onset disaster is a logistical nightmare, with extreme difficulties in accurately assessing needs, the readily available resources and distribution channels."
Natural disasters have become more intense and frequent. The huge forest fires that devastated vast areas of southern Europe and the southern United States filled global news channels throughout 2017, not to mention the storms, hurricanes and cyclones over the past 20 years.
Clearly, serious questions need to be asked about how we can wage the war on time, since more deaths typically occur through inadequate responses to the aftermath, than caused by the event itself
What more can we do to be ready? The answer is efficient logistics.
Logistics plays a critical role in disaster relief, since getting the ‘right product, in the right quantity, to the right place, at the right time, and at the right price’ takes on new meaning when roads, railroads, airports, bridges, and other infrastructure has been severely damaged or destroyed. During, and in the immediate aftermath of a disaster, the immediate spike in demand for food, water, clothing and medical supplies is an order of magnitude greater than most relief agencies and the supply chain are equipped to handle.
In short, disaster relief is a unique, specialized type of supply chain and logistics problem.
Did you know that 91,000 tons of ice bought to cool food, medicine and the sweltering victims of Hurricane Katrina cost American taxpayers more than USD 100 million, and most of it was never delivered? Scores of truck drivers were sent on circuitous routes over several weeks while burning fuel around the clock to keep the ice frozen.
Tsunamis, earthquakes, flood and droughts, among others, also depend on logistics to meet mitigate to the loss of lives and damage incurred.
At the time of a disaster, an accurate assessment of needs, readily available resources and distribution channels is extremely difficult.
"The Multi-Dimensional Digital Economy Application System rapidly mobilizes the global logistics industry to deliver the required resources in the most efficient manner."
It is important to recognize that relief supplies such as blankets, water and medicine needed in the event of an emergency are in transit everyday within the supply chains of the world’s largest retailers and distributors such as Wal-Mart, Costco and Tesco.
What is even more important to recognize is that the Multi-Dimensional Digital Economy Application System (MDDEAS) provides global real-time data visibility of all available relief materials that exist within global supply chains, whether located in warehouses or in transit.
Through its tracking and visibility capabilities, including the use of global positioning systems (GPS) and other documentation methodologies, MDDEAS provides the tools for relief agencies to send a Short Message Service (SMS) to carriers and efficiently re-direct shipments of relief supplies to the areas impacted by the disaster. In addition, the allocation of resources such as ambulances, evacuation conveyances and fire vehicles can be dispatched in a more timely manner.
The MDDEAS rapidly mobilizes the ability to deliver the required resources in the most efficient manner to where it is needed most, the disaster zone.
Furthermore, the MDDEAS works toward delivering an emergency transportation flow management system that directs and re-directs traffic as required, and reroutes shipments during emergency situations, ensuring a sustained flow of commerce.
"Real time visibility and planning capability providing the tools to speed disaster relief and minimize disruptions to the economy”
These benefits include but are not limited to:
- Real-time information on the global availability of all materials needed for emergencies to rapidly and deliver necessary relief supplies in the fastest and most efficient manner
- Improved asset and network management through enhanced visibility and capacity planning
- Accelerated relief response: minimize the loss of lives and property, and maintain operational capabilities
- Reduction of supply chain disruptions by providing a global Emergency Transportation Flow Management system to dynamically reroute shipments during emergency situations to ensure a sustained flow of commerce