British Virgin Islands

Saturday, Jun 19, 2021

Territory putting earthquake and tsunami measures in place

Territory putting earthquake and tsunami measures in place

Governor Augustus Jaspert has given assurance that the relevant authorities are putting all the necessary measures in place to ensure that territory is ready should an earthquake or tsunami threaten the British Virgin Islands.

He made the comments at a recent media briefing, where he revealed a number of initiatives currently being undertaken.

“If we have an earthquake in the region, one of our risks is tsunami, so we will be exercising what’s called Carib Wave – a tsunami exercise which we do every year…In terms of specifics measures of which I have gone through and tested with the Department of Disaster Management (DDM) is things like our sirens which were tested.” Governor Jaspert stated.

“A short while back we had rebuilt the siren network across the territory as well…We’re also going through plans with the emergency services and how would they deploy and make sure that they can make as much noise as possible crudely, so that people within an area can get notice as quickly as possible,” he added.

Important to speed up recovery for stronger infrastructure

Governor Jaspert further stressed on the importance of the rebuilding process, which ensures that the territory is more resilient to withstand the impacts of natural disasters, should any occur.

He said, “One of our most important things is that we have confidence in the infrastructure that we have in the territory should something happen, and that is something that is important that we build up the pace of the recovery and the development so that should we be hit by anything, we know that we got more confidence in our buildings, power, etcetera.”

No need to panic

He further encouraged the general public not to be fearful during times of turbulence, and to trust the training experienced prior to a natural disaster event, that would have prepared them to ensure their safety.

“It is also important for us not to panic, we need to be confident that we are ready, follow advice, know what our plans are, know we’ve taken all the right measures, and not jump on unnecessary reports that aren’t from the authoritative channels,” Govenor Jasport added.

Frequent Earthquake tremors in the region

Earlier this month, the Department of Disaster Management posted a statistical report from the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre, which revealed that between the months of December 2019 and January 2020, 3082 quakes were recorded in the neighbouring Puerto Rico region.

The report further revealed that and average of 50 quakes were felt per day during the two month period with January 1 2020, recording more than 250 quakes.


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