Vanuatu Launches Tsunami Early Warning System

Vanuatu launched its new Tsunami early warning system earlier this month. The new system has been funded by the government of Japan.

The Minister of Climate Change launched the 9 Port Vila Tsunami Sirens on 03 August 2017.

The government of Japan, through the World Bank, funded the 3-year project known as Mainstreaming Disaster Risk Reduction (MDRR) that aims to identify urban hazard areas in Vanuatu and strengthen resources to increase preparedness toward Tsunami events.

The launching event, marking the MDRR project completion, was attended by NGOS, Private Sectors, The Lord Mayor, Shefa Province Representative, Ministry of Climate Change staff and other government officers. All attendees (including all Port Vila town residents and surrounding villages) were allowed the opportunity to hear the sirens ring for 30 seconds after the launching ceremony.

Director General, Jesse Benjamin from the Ministry of Climate Change thanks the Vanuatu National Disaster Office, the Vanuatu Meteorology and Geo-hazards Department, Local Authorities Department and the Shefa Province for their collaboration on this project which is the first of its kind in the pacific, establishing over a hundred tsunami evacuation signs, 52 Tsunami information boards, 74 evacuation maps and 9 Tsunami sirens. Acknowledgements were also extended to Communities, Land Owners and Port Municipality for allowing installation of the tsunami sirens and signage boards around Efate and Santo.

Mrs Janet Orah, Acting Shefa SG acknowledged that the SHEFA Area Secretary Network will continue to look after the existing tsunami resources. In addition, the Lord Mayor stresses the importance on educating our schools on the usage of the tsunami evacuation signage and sirens.

Source: Government of Vanuatu