South China Sea tsunami early warning system expected by 2015

16:46, May 25, 2011      

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According to China's State Oceanic Administration, a total of nine countries along the coast of South China Sea are joining together to build a South China Sea tsunami early warning system, which can notify countries within 10 minutes before a tsunami happens, and the system will be completed in 2015.

Yu Fujiang, an official from the Administration, said the regional tsunami early warning system in South China Sea was a blank all the time when he made a speech at the 24th Session of the UNESCO/IOC Intergovernmental Coordination Group for the Pacific Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System held on May 24 in Beijing.

"The most important thing is to integrate the supervision forces and to share information," Yu said. "The South China Sea is very big, and only by sharing information can warnings about tsunamis be made accurately and in a timely fashion."

He pointed out that China hopes the system could be finished by the year of 2015, and by then the system could issue warnings to South China Sea coastal countries within 10 minutes before an ordinary tsunami happens.

"So far, China's National Marine Environmental Forecasting Center is in charge of early warning about tsunamis, and it successfully issued a warning of the Japanese tsunami not too long ago." Yu revealed, "But China doesn't have such a specific warning center structurally."

Therefore, the administration is applying to the Central Organization Committee Office to establish the "National Tsunami Early Warning Center," and the new center will take charge of issuing authoritative information about tsunamis, Yu said.

Yu also revealed that a total of more than 30 countries along the coast of the Pacific are going to join a tsunami exercise this November.

He said the exercise will be held every two years, but this year's exercise is going to be different since great tsunami will hit nine regions in the Pacific Ocean at the same time under this scenario.

"In past exercises, we assumed the tsunami will only hit one region, while that can cause different impacts to different countries. However, we assumed a great tsunami will hit nine regions at the same time to test the early warning and emergency capabilities on a much higher level," Yu said.

By People's Daily Online
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