By Staff Writer
Australia’s emergency management arrangements were yesterday put to the test in a regional tsunami exercise.
Led by Indonesia, the Indian Ocean Wave exercise tested the ability of agencies to communicate urgent information including the size, intensity and likely land inundation of a simulated tsunami in the region.
The exercise involved emergency services from Western Australia and Commonwealth agencies, including Emergency Management Australia (EMA), Geoscience Australia and the Bureau of Meteorology, who are responsible for the Australian Tsunami Warning System (ATWS).
The ATWS has supported international efforts to establish an Indian Ocean tsunami warning system and most recently contributed to the facilitation of tsunami warning in the South-West Pacific.
The Indian Ocean Wave test involved participants from eighteen nations, including Indonesia, Bangladesh, India, Kenya, Madagascar, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritius, Mozambique, Myanmar, Oman, Pakistan, Seychelles, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Tanzania and Timor Leste.
The exercise also coincided with the United Nations International Disaster Reduction Day.
Parliamentary Secretary for International Development Assistance, Bob McMullan, said it was a “reminder that minimising the threat and consequences of disasters is an important and urgent concern for our region”.
“Australia is now at the forefront of international efforts to reduce the risk of disasters, working with developing countries through our aid program to help make the world’s most vulnerable people safer,” he said.
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