Europe-Lienz, Austria

Hazard and vulnerability profile
Lienz is the district capital of East Tyrol in the state Tyrol in Austria in the Central Eastern Alps. The combination of high relief energy and catchments node makes this location particularly prone to various natural hazards.
Over centuries recurrent devastating floods destroying buildings, bridges and other infrastructure. A series of floods between August 1965 and November 1966 mark the high point of flood disasters in Lienz and constitute a hydrological phenomenon world wide, when more than 200 mm precipitation were recorded within three days of heavy rainfall.

Disaster Risk Reduction Activities
Essential 1 – Risk reducing organization and coordination in place

Progress and achievements – The organisation and coordination of disaster reduction in Lienz is handled by the especially for this purpose installed Environment Department of the city of Lienz. This department takes on environmental and disaster reduction agendas in equal parts. It coordinates the fire brigade, the mountain rescue service, the water rescue service and the Red Cross service of Lienz. All these organisations work on a voluntary basis. The city of Lienz has engaged in a very thorough process of participatory action and awareness building that has lead to a strong sense of citizenship among its residents and hence created the base for exceptionally strong voluntary action.
Furthermore, the Environment Department coordinates the exchange between these voluntary organizations and governmental offices, health authorities and businesses throughout the region, organizes workshops and meetings for all involved stakeholders and identifies action points for further disaster risk management. Its mayor achievement lies in the promotion of a strong sense of citizenship and the consequential mobilization and coordination of volunteers, which takes disaster reduction beyond the responsibilities of state or nation wide bodies such as the police and emergency services.

Plans ‐ A formalization of informal cooperation among respective disaster relief organizations across the region is planned to further exchange of experience and expertise and pool resources where needed and appropriate.

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