Vanuatu launches Tsunami Early Warning System

The Ministry of Climate Change launched 9 tsunami sirens on its Port Vila compound on the 3rd of August. 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 completion of the MDRR project, was attended by NGOS, representatives from the private sector, The Lord Mayor, Shefa Province representatives, Ministry of Climate Change staff and other government officers. All attendees (including all Port Vila town residents and surrounding villages) were invited to hear the sirens ring for 30 seconds, following 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.

The project involved erecting over one hundred tsunami evacuation signs, 52 tsunami information boards, 74 evacuation maps and 9 tsunami sirens. Acknowledgements were also extended to communities, land owners and the Port Municipality for permitting the 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 of educating our schools on the usage of the tsunami evacuation signage and sirens.

By Corporate Services Unit​, Ministry of Climate Change