World Tsunami Awareness Day: Theme History and Importance

     World Tsunami Awareness Day is observed on November 5th every year to raise awareness about the destructive power of tsunamis and the importance of preparedness. Tsunamis are giant waves caused by earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, or landslides that occur under or near the ocean. They can travel at speeds of up to 500 miles per hour and reach heights of over 100 feet.

world Tsunami Awareness Day
world Tsunami Awareness Day

Tsunamis pose a significant threat to all of us, but they are especially dangerous for certain groups of people, such as women, children, people with disabilities, and older persons. The main objective the World Tsunami Awareness Day is to raise awareness about reducing the risks posed by these giant waves and improve community preparedness. The activities during this ritual are intended to explore the relationship between the tsunami and inequality. In particular, they focus on how inequality can make tsunamis more dangerous for certain populations and how the consequences of tsunamis can push vulnerable people into poverty, making inequality worse. 

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Although tsunamis are rare, they can have devastating consequences. In the last century, there have been only 58 tsunamis, but they have killed more than 260,000 people. On average, each disaster has caused 4,600 deaths, more than any other natural hazard.

      Tsunamis can cause widespread damage and loss of life. In 2011, a magnitude 9.0 earthquake and tsunami struck Japan, killing over 15,000 people and destroying entire communities. In 2004, a magnitude 9.1 earthquake and tsunami struck the Indian Ocean, killing over 230,000 people, The highest number of deaths in that period occurred ,  in 14 countries, with Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India and Thailand worst affected.

       Tsunamis can occur anywhere in the world, but they are most common in the Pacific Ocean. The Pacific Ocean is home to the Ring of Fire, a zone of intense seismic and volcanic activity. The Ring of Fire is responsible for over 80% of the world’s earthquakes and 75% of the world’s volcanic eruptions.

       While tsunamis are unpredictable, there are steps that can be taken to prepare for them. One of the most important things to do is to know if you live in a tsunami-prone area. If you do, you should have a plan for what to do if a tsunami warning is issued. This plan should include evacuation routes, emergency supplies, and a safe place to go.

world Tsunami Awareness Day
world Tsunami Awareness Day

     Another important step is to be aware of the signs of a tsunami. These signs include:

  1.  A strong earthquake
  2.  A sudden and rapid recession of the ocean
  3. A loud roar from the ocean
  4.  A wall of water approaching the shore.
  5. If you see any of these signs, you should evacuate to higher ground immediately.


In 2022, the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) launched the #GetToHighGround campaign to promote awareness about reducing tsunami risk. The campaign encourages citizens to participate in exercises, runs or walks along tsunami evacuation routes, helping communities prepare for natural disasters and build their resilience. These events are inclusive and engaging, and they involve everyone in raising awareness about reducing tsunami risk.

Tsunami early warning systems

      Tsunami early warning systems are another important tool for tsunami preparedness. These systems use a variety of sensors to detect tsunamis and issue warnings to coastal communities. Early warning systems can give people valuable time to evacuate to safety.

      In addition to preparedness, it is also important to educate people about tsunamis. This includes teaching people about the signs and symptoms of tsunamis, as well as evacuation procedures. Tsunami education can help to save lives in the event of a tsunami.

      World Tsunami Awareness Day is an opportunity to raise awareness about the dangers of tsunamis and to encourage people to take steps to prepare for them. By being prepared, we can reduce the loss of life and damage caused by tsunamis.

The following are some specific actions that can be taken on World Tsunami Awareness Day:-

  1. Learn about the tsunami risk in your area.– Visit the website of your local emergency management office or tsunami warning center to learn more about the tsunami risk in your area.
2. Develop a tsunami evacuation plan.– Your plan should include evacuation routes, emergency supplies, and a safe place to go.
3. Share your knowledge with others.- Talk to your family, friends, and neighbors about tsunamis and the importance of preparedness.
4. Support tsunami preparedness efforts in your community.- Contact your local emergency management office or tsunami warning center to learn how you can get involved.

In addition to the above actions, individuals can also support tsunami preparedness by:-

  1. Donating to tsunami preparedness organizations. -There are a number of non-profit organizations that are working to raise awareness about tsunamis and to help communities prepare for them.
    2. Volunteering their time to tsunami preparedness efforts.- There are many ways to volunteer for tsunami preparedness, such as helping to develop evacuation plans, educating the public about tsunamis, and participating in tsunami drills.
    3. Advocating for tsunami preparedness at the local, state, and national levels.- Individuals can contact their elected officials to urge them to support tsunami preparedness initiatives.

By taking these actions, we can all help to make our communities safer from tsunamis.

world Tsunami Awareness Day
world Tsunami Awareness Day

The Role of Technology in Tsunami Preparedness

      Technology is playing an increasingly important role in tsunami preparedness. Tsunami early warning systems are becoming more sophisticated and accurate, and new technologies are being developed to help people evacuate safely in the event of a tsunami.

      One example of a new technology that is being used for tsunami preparedness is the smartphone app Tsunami Buddy. Tsunami Buddy is a free app that provides users with real-time tsunami information and alerts. The app also allows users to share their location with friends and family members in the event of a tsunami.

       Another new technology that is being used for tsunami preparedness is the tsunami evacuation drone. Tsunami evacuation drones are equipped with cameras and speakers that can be used to help people evacuate safely. The drones can be flown over tsunami-prone areas to provide real-time information about the situation and to direct people to safe evacuation routes.

Technology is also being used to develop new tsunami-resistant.

Themes of World Tsunami Awareness Day

The themes of World Tsunami Awareness Day have evolved over time to reflect the growing understanding of tsunamis and the importance of community-based preparedness and early warning systems. The 2023 theme, “Early Warning and Early Action: Build a Tsunami Safe World,” emphasizes the importance of early warning and early action to save lives and reduce the impacts of tsunamis. From 2006 the themes of every year is listed below.

Years The

Themes of World Tsunami Awareness Day

me of World Tsunami Awareness Day
2006Early Warning Systems for Tsunami Risk Reduction
2007Tsunami Preparedness: Community Action for Early Warning Systems
2008Tsunami Awareness: Education and Training for Risk Reduction
2009Tsunami Resilience: Preparing for the Next Big Wave
2010Tsunami: Learning from the Past, Building for the Future
2011Children and Tsunami: Safeguarding Our Future
2012Tsunami: Protecting Our Communities, Building Our Resilience
2013Tsunamis: Be Prepared, Be Safe
2014Reducing the Risk of Tsunamis: Community Resilience
2015My Tsunami Ready Community
2016Tsunami Preparedness: One Community at a Time
2017Home Safe Home: Tsunami Preparedness for Everyone
2018Tsunami Warning and Evacuation Signs: Saving Lives
2019Reduce Risk before Disaster: Community Resilience to Tsunamis
2020Together We Build Tsunami Resilience
2021Early Warning and Early Action for All
2022Early Warning and Early Action Before Every Tsunami
2023Early Warning and Early Action: Build a Tsunami Safe World
2024Coming Soon…..
Themes of World Tsunami Awareness Day

The theme of World Tsunami Awareness Day is chosen each year by the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO, which is the lead agency responsible for coordinating tsunami preparedness and early warning systems worldwide. The IOC selects the theme based on current tsunami research and best practices, and to raise awareness of specific tsunami preparedness and early warning challenges and solutions.

These themes highlight the importance of early warning systems, preparedness, education, training, resilience, and community action in reducing the risk of tsunamis. And this International festival encourages all sectors of society to engage and cooperate in disaster risk reduction.

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Tsunamis can be deadly, but they don’t have to be. Early warning and prompt action are effective tools to protect people, save lives, and prevent hazards from becoming disasters. To be effective, tsunami early-warning systems must cover every at-risk person, they must be multi-hazard, and communities must be prepared so they can act quickly.

Background of World Tsunami Awareness Day

In December 2015, the United Nations General Assembly designated 5th  day of November as World Tsunami Awareness Day, calling on countries, international bodies and civil society to share innovative approaches to raising tsunami awareness and reducing risk.

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World Tsunami Awareness Day was the brainchild of Japan, which due to its repeated bitter experience over the years has developed major expertise in areas such as tsunami early warning, public action and building back better after disasters to reduce future impacts. Has Developed. United Nations Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) facilitates the observance of World Tsunami Awareness Day in collaboration with the rest of the United Nations system.

Just three weeks later of 2004 Tsunami , the international community came together in Kobe, Hyogo region of Japan. Governments adopted the 10-year Hyogo Framework for Action, the first comprehensive global agreement on disaster risk reduction.

They also created the Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System, which boasts multiple seismic and sea-level monitoring stations and broadcasts alerts to national tsunami information centers.

Rapid urbanization and increasing tourism in tsunami-prone areas are putting more and more people in harm’s way. This makes risk reduction a key factor if the world is to achieve substantial reductions in disaster mortality – a primary goal of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030, adopted in March 2015 to replace the Hyogo 15 -Year International Agreement Framework.

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Globally, more than 700 million people in low-lying coastal areas and small island developing states are exposed to extreme sea-level events, including tsunamis (World Health Organization, 2019).

Early warning systems can only be effective if the population is well aware of the tsunami threat and knows what to do in an emergency. This means ensuring that at-risk populations have equal access to information and evacuation routes (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, 2022).

Inequality creates conditions that make people vulnerable to disasters like tsunamis. The poorest and most at-risk are disproportionately affected, increasing inequality. Reducing vulnerability to disasters includes addressing poverty, risk and vulnerability.

Events Related to Tsunami 

  1. Special Exhibition: IDDRR 2023-For a Resilient Future, Morori City, Japan
  2. Global Status of Multi-Hazard Early Warning Systems: Target G
  3. Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (2015-2030)
  4. Hyogo Framework for Action (2005–2015)

Petra Nemcova, World Tsunami Awareness Advocate

Czech model and entrepreneur Petra Nemcova is the official United Nations Disaster Risk Reduction World Tsunami Awareness Advocate, celebrated every year on 5 November. Petra Nemcova not only survived the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami in Thailand, but she also found a way to survive and share her experiences in service to those affected by disasters.

United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development

The oceanic zone is the largest component of the Earth system that stabilizes the climate and supports life and human well-being on Earth. That’s why the United Nations announced the Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030) to support efforts to reverse the cycle of decline in ocean health.

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What is Tsunami?

The word “tsunami” consists of the Japanese words “tsu” (meaning port) and “nami” (meaning wave). A tsunami is a series of huge waves generated by underwater movements usually associated with earthquakes that occur under or near the ocean.
Volcanic eruptions, submarine landslides, and collapse of coastal rocks can also generate tsunamis, as can a large asteroid impacting the ocean. They are produced by vertical movement of the ocean floor resulting in the displacement of water masses.
Tsunami waves often look like walls of water and can strike shorelines and be dangerous for hours, with waves occurring every 5 to 60 minutes.
The first wave may not be the largest, and often it is the second, third, fourth or even subsequent waves that are the largest. After a wave floods, or floods inland, it often retreats seaward as far as a person can see, so the sea floor is exposed. The next wave comes ashore within a few minutes and carries with it many floating debris that were destroyed by previous waves.

What are the causes of tsunami?

The main causes of tsunamis are as fallows-
1. Earthquake
It can be generated by movements in fault zones associated with plate boundaries.
Most intense earthquakes occur at subduction zones where an oceanic plate slides beneath a continental plate or other smaller oceanic plate.
Not all earthquakes cause tsunamis. Four conditions are necessary for an earthquake to cause a tsunami:
a. The earthquake must occur under the sea or cause material to slide into the sea.
b. The earthquake must be intense, with a minimum intensity of 6.5 on the Richter scale.
c. The earthquake must break the Earth’s surface and it must occur at a shallow depth – less than 70 km below the Earth’s surface.
d. An earthquake should cause vertical movement (up to several metres) in the seabed.
2. Landslide
Landslides along the coast can push large amounts of water into the ocean, disrupting the water and generating tsunamis. Underwater landslides can also result in tsunamis when material loosened by a landslide moves violently, exposing the water to it.
3. volcanic eruption
Although relatively infrequent, violent volcanic eruptions also represent impulsive disturbances, which can displace large volumes of water and generate extremely destructive tsunami waves in the immediate source area.
One of the largest and most destructive tsunamis ever recorded was generated by the eruption and collapse of the Krakatoa volcano in Indonesia on August 26, 1883. The eruption sent waves up to 135 feet high, destroying coastal towns and villages across the Sunda Strait in both the islands of Java and Sumatra, killing 36,417 people.
supernatural conflict
4. Tsunami caused by extraterrestrial collision (i.e. asteroid, meteor) is an extremely rare event. Although no meteorite/asteroid-induced tsunamis have been recorded in recent history, scientists realize that if these celestial bodies hit the ocean, large amounts of water would undoubtedly cause a tsunami.

Why is World Tsunami Day celebrated?

World Tsunami Awareness Day is observed every year on 5th November, to prepare strategies to save more lives in view of future disasters.

Why is November 5 World tsunami Awareness day?

The earthquake and tsunami that occurred on November 5 (Japanese calendar) in 1854 is remembered in Japan because of the heroic actions of Hamaguchi Goryū, a farmer who took prescient steps to save the lives of his fellow villagers of Hiro-mura. As with many tsunamis, the event was triggered by an earthquake.

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