12.12.2011 - Natural Sciences Sector

UNESCO-IOC congratulates Anguilla on achieving TsunamiReady recognition

© UNESCO/IOCTsunami evacuation area

The British territory of Anguilla is now more prepared for a tsunami, having completed a rigorous set of preparation criteria to earn National Weather Service TsunamiReady® recognition. The governor of Anguilla received the official designation in a ceremony on 12 December, along with TsunamiReady signs and a recognition letter.

Anguilla is the 1st non-US community to earn TsunamiReady recognition in the Carribean. Anguilla established a 24-hour emergency operations center, developed multiple ways to receive tsunami warnings and alert the public, developed a formal tsunami hazard plan, conducted emergency exercises and promoted public readiness through community education.

The TsunamiReady Program, developed by the National Weather Service, is designed to help cities, towns, counties, universities and other large sites in coastal areas reduce the potential for disastrous tsunami-related consequences. Communities have fewer fatalities and property damage if they plan before a tsunami arrives. No community is tsunami proof, but TsunamiReady can help minimize loss to your community.

In addition to Anguilla, nearly 100 communities have taken the necessary steps to become TsunamiReady in the United States, Puerto Rico, Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands. The National Weather Service is working in partnership with the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (UNESCO-IOC) to bring the TsunamiReady program to more countries in effort to bolster international tsunami preparedness.

After forty years of experience coordinating the Pacific Tsunami Warning System (PTWS), UNESCO-IOC is leading a global effort to establish ocean-based tsunami warning systems as part of an overall multi-hazard disaster reduction strategy. The Intergovernmental Coordination Group for the Tsunami and other Coastal Hazards Warning System for the Caribbean and Adjacent Regions (ICG/CARIBE EWS) was established in 2005 as part of this effort. UNESCO-IOC will be evaluating Anguilla’s pioneer project to explore its application in the Caribbean region.

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