TIC Training Programme (ITP-HAWAII) on Tsunami Early Warning Systems and the PTWC Enhanced Products, Tsunami Evacuation Planning and Tsunami Ready Programme.

Tuesday, 3 September 2019 - Friday, 13 September 2019

Honolulu, Honolulu, United States of America , Honolulu

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The ITP -2019 training will be conducted by the International Tsunami Information Center (ITIC), in collaboration with the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center and technical and emergency management partners in Hawaii (USA). The ITP-Hawaii will demonstrate a working example of an end-to-end tsunami warning and mitigation system centered in Hawaii, with PTWC as its local tsunami warning centre. ITIC is hosted by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the Hydrographic and Oceanographic Service (SHOA) Chile in partnership with the IOC of UNESCO.

Over the last 15+ years, by improving data quality, quantity, and numerical methods, PTWC’s response time has dropped significantly from one hour to within 5–7 minutes of the earthquake. Since 2014 for the Pacific, and 2016 for the Caribbean region, PTWC has also issued enhanced products that include forecasts of the expected coastal impact of tsunamis for each country.

In 2019, the Japan’s Northwest Pacific Tsunami Advisory Center (NWPTAC) upgraded its products to include graphical forecasts, and China’s South China Sea Tsunami Advisory Center (SCSTAC) is issuing graphical forecast products in experimental mode.
In this respect, it is worth reminding that globally 90% of the casualties caused by tsunamis (99% in the Pacific) have resulted from local tsunamis that attacked in a few minutes, leaving no time for preparation. In this context, communities and individuals must know in advance what to do and where to evacuate to. Tsunami warning centres (TWC) must have clear standard operating procedures that can be rapidly executed to issue alerts, and the TWC staff must be well-trained and prepared to act quickly and decisively.

Recognizing that local tsunamis remain the most challenging operation for countries, the 2019 ITP-Hawaii will focus its training on Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) for warning and emergency response as guided by the draft National Tsunami Warning Center Minimum Competency Levels and the Local-Source Tsunami Response Best Practice approved this past April at the 28th session of the Intergovernmental Coordination Group for the Pacific Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System (Nicaragua, 2–5 April 2019). The training will also focus on preparedness and tsunami evacuation planning, including inundation and evacuation mapping, response planning, and exercising, in the context of meeting the guidelines of the UNESCO-IOC Tsunami Ready Programme for community recognition. On the last day, a tsunami exercise will be conducted requiring country decision-making and action using national products supplemented by the PTWC Enhanced Products.

ITP-Hawaii is open primarily to all country members of ICG/PTWS and ICG/CARIBE-EWS. Participants from other regional tsunami warning systems are welcome. On Day 1, participants are expected to give a 15-minute presentation on their country’s tsunami warning and mitigation system, including their tsunami SOPs.