Protecting Cultural Heritage is an activity based mainly on efforts aimed at avoiding that any kind of threat could pose a significant hazard to the objects that must be preserved. There are conditions, nonetheless, that oblige to evacuate the artefacts, since the preventive measures cannot be anymore effective. So, in specific situations, museums and their staff may go through challenging times due both to natural disasters and climate change.
In the case of museums, when they are threatened for their role in protecting and valorizing precious witnesses of the past and human creativity, their intrinsic value for intercultural dialogue and mutual understanding must be protected and supported.
The handbook provides step-by-step guidance for evacuating cultural collections under extreme conditions. It is aimed at assisting people and institutions,which try to prevent the destruction and looting of cultural objects during a crisis situation. It can be used also to train others and to improve emergency preparedness at cultural sites. According the document, the Egyptian Heritage Rescue Foundation (EHRF), a Cairo based non-governmental organisation, has performed the field-testing of the workflow.
Most important, the handbook deals with issues like when to evacuate cultural heritage objects, how to do it, which workflow adopt, how to assess the threat and other important aspects of preparedness and management of emergency evacuations. Obviously, the handbook can not give instructions about the prioritisation in removing objects, since such activity is strongly related to a complex of assessment depending of man different considerations, but it has the merit of drawing attention to this passage of emergency procedures and providing some basic information.
The document can be downloaded from the ICCROM website or here: