National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration
United States Department of Commerce


FY 1989

Early warning system for tsunamis is tested successfully in Chile

Bernard, E.N.

Earth in Space, 1(9), 7–10 (1989)

Throughout history, natural disasters have killed, injured and displaced people of every nation on the globe. Recently, a local system that includes emergency planning, hazard assessment, and rapid warning via satellite communication links has been successfully tested in tsunami-prone Chile. Rapid-onset natural hazards, such as earthquakes, landslides, tsunamis, hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, volcanic eruptions and wildfires, have claimed more than 2.8 million lives worldwide in the past 20 years and have adversely affected 820 million people. The world's vulnerability and the social and economic cost of these hazards will only increase in the future because of population growth and urban concentration, increased capital investment coupled with new technologies, the existence of vulnerable critical facilities and fragile lifelines, and increasing interdependence of local, national and international communities.

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