Would you know what to do to survive in the event of a natural disaster or some other emergency? It is very easy to panic when danger threatens, and the government has therefore taken steps to ensure the public is properly prepared. A leaflet containing a list of the telephone numbers of different government departments which can give assistance in an emergency has recently been published. The different departments can offer advice on what to do during a typhoon, a thunderstorm, flooding, landslips, earthquake and nuclear incident. A Chinese version of the leaflet is already available at district offices, and an English version will be available soon. The leaflet forms part of a long-term public education programme to enhance residents' awareness of how to deal with emergencies and natural disasters. Other activities to promote this objective will be worked out by a newly created Emergency Support Unit (ESU) under the Security Branch. The unit is also responsible for co-ordinating contingency plans within government departments, providing support to the government's emergency response system, and organising training for staff required to take charge in emergencies. The former Government Secretariat Emergency Co-ordination Centre has been renamed the Emergency Monitoring and Support Centre (EMSC) in order to reflect more accurately its role and functions in the overall Government Emergency Response System. 'EMSC's main role is to act as the monitoring and support centre for the Government Secretariat during a widespread or major emergency,' said a government spokesman. 'We hope this will help correct the common mistake that it is an operational command centre, over and above the operational command centres in the Emergency Services,' he said. EMSC staff will monitor the development of incidents and the government's response. The centre will also render civilian support to the operations of the emergency services and supporting agencies when required. Most of the government's emergency responses are handled by the emergency departments at the operational level, and the EMSC would be called into action only when a major incident causing widespread threats to security, property and life is developing, and where extensive government emergency response operations are necessary. 'In discharging its monitoring role, EMSC will liaise closely with other command and communications centres such as the Police Headquarters Command and Control Centre and the Fire Services Communications Centre,' the spokesman added.