VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – Preparing for an earthquake is not a government priority; that’s the conclusion of an audit from BC’s Auditor General.
A new report once again shows BC is not ready for a major quake. The conclusions are similar to those made by the Auditor General’s office 17 years ago.
According to this latest audit, Emergency Management BC, which is supposed to lead the government’s response to an earthquake, has not fulfilled its mandate.
Auditor General Russ Jones says government has instead spent its money on more immediate demands.
Jones finds the province’s lack of preparedness hasn’t been made public.
While the report is aimed at the province, the Auditor General also asks each of us to consider if we’ve done all we can to be prepared. He notes there’s a 12 per cent chance of a catastrophic quake in BC within the next 50 years.
Meanwhile, the provincial government says it is accepting all the recommendations in the report and will take immediate action.
Justice Minister Suzanne Anton insists Emergency Management BC is developing a long-term plan for earthquake preparedness. She adds it’s something all levels of government need to work on.
The City of Vancouver released a comprehensive earthquake strategy late last year.
News1130 spoke with people in Vancouver about whether there is worry over the province not being ready.
“Yeah, I think so,” says one man.
“Yes the big one is coming we need to be prepared,” says another.