BMKG calls for expediting Tsunami Ready Community formation
Jakarta, Indonesianpost.com – The Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) has urged countries that are vulnerable to tsunamis to accelerate the formation of Tsunami Ready Communities to reduce risks, especially to minimize the number of victims.
In a statement released here on Wednesday, BMKG head Dwikorita Karnawati said that the Aceh tsunami in 2004, the Samoa tsunami in 2009, the Chile tsunami in 2010, and the tsunami in Japan’s Tohoku in 2011 are proof that the threat of tsunamis is real.
“Countries that are prone to tsunamis need to prepare community preparedness in coastal areas so they know how to deal with this disaster if it happens,” she said.
She conveyed the statement virtually at the forum of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) Disaster Resilience Week and the Corresponding 8th Session of the Committee on Disaster Risk Reduction held in Bangkok, Thailand, on July 24 and 25, 2023.
The Tsunami Ready Community is a program to improve the community’s capacity in facing the threat of tsunamis based on 12 indicators that are related to risk potential assessment, preparedness, and response set by UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission.
The 12 indicators include mapping tsunami hazard zones; estimating the number of people at risk within the tsunami hazard zone; identifying economic, infrastructure, and political resources; as well as ensuring the availability of an easy-to-understand tsunami evacuation map.
A community can be categorized as a Tsunami Ready Community if tsunami information, including signs, is displayed to the public; there is the dissemination of information, public awareness, and education; and the dissemination of information or educational activities is conducted at least three times a year.
The indicators also include holding training for and by the community at least once every two years, preparing an emergency contingency or response plan, and building capacity for the operational management of emergency response when a tsunami occurs.
The other indicators are ensuring the availability of adequate and reliable facilities for receiving timely tsunami early warnings from the authorities for 24 hours and making sure that adequate and reliable means to disseminate official 24-hour tsunami warnings in a timely manner to the local community are also available.
“The active involvement of all elements of the community is needed to accelerate the realization of the Tsunami Ready Community. Not only the government but also private parties, academicians, communities, including the media,” Karnawati said.
The community of Tanjung Benoa village in Bali is one of the communities that have been recognized by UNESCO as a Tsunami Ready Community.