A mock tsunami exercise threatening thirty eight countries around the Pacific region is underway to test co-ordination and to better prepare people for tidal waves.
The multi-scenario drill gives Pacific countries the opportunity to exercise using a destructive local or regional tsunami scenario.
Jenny Meyer reports.
"The operation named PacWave 11 will also be used to introduce new tsunami advisory products. Guidelines on how to plan, conduct, and evaluate tsunami exercises will be used and tested. The exercise aims to boost readiness and responsiveness and improve coordination between regional agencies. Schools, and businesses are also joining in the tsunami practise which feature text messages and web alerts as well as tsunami warning systems on some islands such as American Samoa. Government from participating countries will fill out a PacWave 11 questionnaire by February 2012 to provide feedback on their experiences and a report will be out in June. There are 10 different earthquake hypocentre scenarios available including trenches near Japan, the Philippines, Vanuatu, Tonga, Chile, Colombia and the Aleutian Islands."