news7 novembre 2023

World Tsunami Awareness Day, how to prepare for a tsunami

Italy is also involved in the Day with several scheduled events

World Tsunami Awareness Day

5 November each year marks World Tsunami Awareness Day, a global tsunami risk awareness day introduced in 2015 by the UN General Assembly.

This year, in Italy and in the countries belonging to the area known as NEAMTWS (Northeast Atlantic, Mediterranean and connected seas Tsunami Warning System), the event is being celebrated with various activities that will allow institutions and citizens to evaluate their preparedness through tests and simulations.

On 6 and 7 November will take place NEAMWave23, an exercise involving all the countries along the Mediterranean and north-east Atlantic coasts. Among the participants is INGV's Tsunami Alert Centre (CAT-INGV) in the role of Tsunami Service Provider of the NEAM area. This role was assumed with the realisation of the Mediterranean baseline scenario, i.e., a tsunami generated by an 8.1 magnitude earthquake in Crete.

During NEAMWave23, the CAT will send a set of alert messages with key information on the hypothetical tsunami event through a technological platform to the Civil Protection Department; it will then be the Department's responsibility to forward the messages to all the structures of the Civil Protection system on the territory to allow the activation of the organisational machine according to the planning foreseen in case of such events.

The drill is therefore an opportunity to test the civil protection planning in case of tsunami, the communication systems of the SiAM platform used to simultaneously distribute alert messages to institutions, and to improve preparedness and strengthen cooperation between participating countries.

The Municipality of Minturno (LT), one of the four Italian municipalities that have been nominated for the IOC/UNESCO status "Tsunami Ready", which acknowledges the creation of resilient communities by implementing tsunami awareness and preparedness strategies, will also play its part in the drill. On 7 November, the students at a local primary school and kindergarten will in fact be the key players in an evacuation, a simulation of what could happen in case of a disastrous event with the purpose of raising awareness among citizens of all ages and promoting risk awareness.