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OSDMA Organises Indian Ocean wide Tsunami Mock Exercise, ‘IOWave20’

Bhubaneswar: OSDMA organized the Indian Ocean wide Tsunami Mock Exercise (IOWave20) in six coastal districts of Odisha today. This is an international event coordinated by Intergovernmental Coordination Group for Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System (ICG/IOTWMS) of UNESCO-IOC. In India, the exercise is coordinated by Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS).

It has been decided to conduct the Exercise in two phases in India (Phase-1 on 13th October, 2020 for East Coast of India and Andaman Nicobar Islands and Phase-2 on 20th October 2020 for the West Coast of India and Lakshadweep Islands). Due to the present COVID-19 pandemic situation, the IOWave 20 Exercise has been limited to test communication channel (COMMs test) instead of full exercise.

In Odisha, the entire exercise has been coordinated from State Emergency Operation Center, Bhubaneswar following the Standard operating Procedures (SOP). The Exercise was started at 9.30 AM today. After getting the test tsunami message from INCOIS, all the alert siren systems in the coast were activated from SEOC at 9.30 AM, 9.45 AM and 10.00 AM.

Mass SMSs were sent through the EWDS from SEOC to the selected people. Voice massages were sent through the alert siren systems from Block EOC. The DMR systems provided to the Alert siren locations were test checked for the two way communication. Satellite Phones (SMDVT) provided to the districts were activated to transmit the message. All the communication channels under EWDS projects were test checked.

The Test bulletins issued by INCOIS were sent to the Dist. EOCs of the six coastal districts through different communication modes, viz., Email, Fax, Social Media. District authorities forwarded the same massage to the Block Authorities through Email, Fax, Social Media. Subsequently, the messages were transmitted to the community in the tsunami prone area.

A “virtual” tabletop exercise was conducted at 11.00 AM at SEOC under the guidance of PK Jena, Additional Chief Secretary and Managing Director, OSDMA to assess Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), for tsunami warning and emergency response and reviewing the preparedness. Collectors, ADMs, DEOs and DPOs from six coastal districts, BDOs from 22 coastal blocks and Officers from OSDMA & SRC office participated in the virtual meeting.

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