Abdulla Al Abbar, Business Continuity Certified Expert (BCCE) and Manager
A major disaster drill, conducted on the company’s premises on 18 December 2011, has confirmed that the full Crisis and Business Continuity Management (“CBCM”) system developed and implemented at Dubai Aluminium (“DUBAL”) integrates smoothly with the local government emergency services. So says Abdulla Al Abbar (Business Continuity Certified Expert (BCCE) and Manager: CBCM, Assets Protection & Loss Prevention), who advises that the participants in the exercise – which included DUBAL’s Assets Protection & Loss Prevention departments, the DUBAL Medical Centre, Dubai Civil Defense, Dubai Union Ambulance and the Dubai Police – worked seamlessly side-by-side in an extremely professional and efficient way.
For DUBAL, which owns and operates one of the world’s largest single-site primary aluminium smelters and is widely accepted as the UAE’s industrial flagship, the exercise confirmed that its CBCM system is not only comprehensive but also appropriately structured for the facility’s needs. “The development of DUBAL’s Crisis and Emergency Management system began in 2005 when DUBAL conducted Plant Major Incident exercises involving external agencies such as Dubai’s Civil Defence, Police and Police Ambulance services,” Al Abbar explains. “These exercises highlighted a need for DUBAL to develop greater competence in managing crisis and emergency situations. After an extensive global search into the best-available systems, we selected the CBCM best suited to DUBAL’s needs and began implementing the same in December 2006. Over the past six years, we have gone through all the required phases to establish the system – including thorough training through mock scenarios leading to emergency and crisis management responses.”
Al Abbar adds that the objective of the exercise on 18 December 2011 was to test the integration of DUBAL’s CBCM system with the services of local authorities. “Whereas our last major drill in 2005 was hampered by a lack of co-ordination and the absence of a formal system at DUBAL, this month’s drill was performed excellently. From the command post in DUBAL’s Emergency Centre down to the response personnel on the ground, the decision-making was sound and the melioration actions appropriate. Everyone involved worked together as one team, which enhanced the effectiveness of the emergency and crisis management process immensely.”
The feedback received from the external participants has been equally positive, especially those members of the team who participated in the 2005 drill.
Al Abbar concludes by acknowledging the strong co-operation between DUBAL’s operational and administrative areas. “Without a strong sense of belonging and pride in our company, this level of teamwork would not be achieved,” he says. “In situations such as this, we truly live-out DUBAL’s corporate slogan – Together, we shine.”