» Ahead of World Tsunami Awareness Day, Saint Kitts and Nevis recognized as “Tsunami Ready”
28.10.2016 - Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission

Ahead of World Tsunami Awareness Day, Saint Kitts and Nevis recognized as “Tsunami Ready”

Christa von Hillebrandt-Andrade (IOC-UNESCO) handles the Tsunami Ready certificate of recognition to Claricia Langley-Stevens (St. Kitts and Nevis).

As the United Nations prepares to celebrate the first World Tsunami Awareness Day on 5 November, Saint Kitts and Nevis has become the latest recipient of the Tsunami Ready Certificate of Recognition, awarded by UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) for compliance with all international tsunami risk reduction guidelines.

Saint Kitts and Nevis join 51 other coastal communities in the Caribbean that have been recognized as TsunamiReady®. The Federation is the first community to receive this recognition as part of the CARIBE EWS Tsunami Ready pilot project which is modeled after the successful US Tsunami Ready® program in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands and an earlier joint TsunamiReady project piloted jointly by the IOC-UNESCO and the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), that recognized British Virgin Islands and Anguilla (UK). The Tsunami Ready recognition is valid for three years.

The Pilot was coordinated by the US Caribbean Tsunami Warning Program with funding from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). Several other Member States have indicated their interest in implementing the Tsunami Ready recognition program in their vulnerable communities. No community is tsunami proof, but projects such as Tsunami Ready can help communities save lives.

Over the past 500 years 75 tsunamis have killed 4484 people according to NOAA’s Global Tsunami Database. Yet the 5 November World Tsunami Awareness Day commemorations will give Caribbean states in particular the opportunity to celebrate the significant improvements achieved in safety and readiness for coastal communities through tsunami modeling, evacuation mapping, CARIBE WAVE exercises and education outreach efforts.

The Caribbean World Tsunami Awareness Day event was organized in the afternoon of 20 October 2016 back-to-back to the Special Committee Meeting of the Disaster Risk Reduction and Transport of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS). The meeting was organized by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) in coordination with IOC-UNESCO, ACS, the Government of Japan and the regional Caribbean and Central American Emergency Management Agencies – CDEMA and CEPREDENAC.

For more information, please contact:

Bernardo Aliaga (b.aliaga@unesco.org)

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