World Tsunami Awareness Day is celebrated on November 5 of every year. Tsunamis are rare circumstances but can be extremely deadly. In the past 100 years, 58 of them have required more than 260,000 lives, or an average of 4,600 per disaster, exceeding any other natural hazards. A large number of deaths in that period was in the Indian Ocean tsunami of December 2004. It caused an evaluated 227,000 fatalities in 14 countries, with Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India and Thailand hardest-hit.
Just three weeks next that the international identity came together in Kobe, in Japan’s Hyogo region. Governments approved the 10-year Hyogo Framework for Action, the first comprehensive global agreement on disaster risk reduction. They also founded the Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System, which boasts scores of seismographic and sea-level monitoring stations and disseminates alerts to national tsunami information centers.
A lot of times we work across multiple platforms. We’ll go to Japan working on the tsunami for ‘Nightly News’ and it’ll end up on ‘Dateline.’ – Lester Holt
Rapid urbanization and increasing tourism in tsunami-prone regions are putting ever-more people in harm’s way. That makes the decline of risk a key factor if the world is to achieve actual reductions in disaster mortality, a primary goal of the Sendai Framework, the 15-year international convention adopted in March 2015 to succeed the Hyogo Framework. In December 2015, the UN Officer Assembly designated 5 November as World Tsunami Awareness Day.
History of World Tsunami Awareness Day
The World Tsunami Awareness Day was first observed on November 5, 2016. The event has been organized with Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) Champions at the Asian Ministerial Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction (AMCDRR) 2016. And they planned for the conference on November 3-5, 2016 at Vigyan Bhawan in New Delhi by the Government of India in collaboration with the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR).
The significance of this day, the 5th of November, to tsunami awareness can be traced back to the year 1854. A village in Wakayama Prefecture, Japan, was concerned about an approaching tsunami after a high-intensity earthquake on November 5, 1854. He began up a fire to rice sheaves on the top of a hill. Master villagers, who went atop to put off the fire, were saved even as a tsunami damaged their village down below. It was the original documented case of a tsunami early warning.
To commemorate that day of “Inamura no Hi” (the burning of rice sheaves), a resolution was jointly proposed by 142 countries including Japan as a follow-up of the third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Depression and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The United Nations assigned the 5th November as World Tsunami Awareness Day. The observance of the day would help to spread awareness among people across the world in matters related to the dangers of the tsunami and shall stress the importance of early warning systems to mitigate damage from the often destructive natural hazard. It also directs at reviving traditional knowledge about tsunamis. Awareness-raising activities will be planned throughout the Conference through thematic events, exhibitions, and the distribution of knowledge materials. Following the devastating Indian Ocean Tsunami of 2004, the Government of India established an Indian Tsunami Early Warning Centre (ITEWC) under the Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS) at Hyderabad. The Centre, operational since October 2007, has a state-of-the-art infrastructure for generating and disseminating tsunami bulletins for the entire Indian Ocean region. India, along with 23 other Indian Ocean countries, participated in a tsunami mock drill on September 7-8, 2016. Besides increasing awareness, the training evaluated the preparedness of participating nations to handle tsunami and other similar emergency situations.
Other Celebrations on November 5
November 5 is also celebrated as
- National Love Your Red Hair Day
- Guy Fawkes Day or Guy Fawkes Night
- Love Your Lawyer Day
- Fountain Pen Day
How To Celebrate World Tsunami Awareness Day
“The observance of the day would help to spread awareness among people across the world in matters related to the dangers of the tsunami and shall stress the importance of early warning systems to mitigate damage from the often devastating natural hazard,” the release said. You can use the hashtag #WorldTsunamiAwarenessDay to spread awareness on social media.
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