Worldwide there are approximately 3,000 merchant ports and the work of the Harbour Master can vary widely from country to country and from port to port even within the same country.
At its 12th session held in Kish Island, Iran in March 2019, the Inter-governmental Coordination Group for the Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System (ICG/IOTWMS) decided to organise an Indian Ocean Wave Exercise (IOWave20) in 2020 and established a Task Team to plan and conduct the exercise. At its intersessional meeting held in Jakarta, Indonesia on 29 September 2019, the Task Team decided to conduct the IOWave20 exercise on 6, 13 and 20 October 2020.
IOWave20 will simulate Indian Ocean countries being put in a tsunami warning situation and require the National Tsunami Warning Centre (NTWC) and the National and/or Local Disaster Management Offices (NDMO/LDMO) in each country to implement their Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).
In addition to testing the SOPs and communication links at all levels of the warning chain, a primary objective of IOWave20 is to enhance tsunami preparedness at community level. To this end, Exercise IOWave20 will also provide an opportunity for Member States to test the UNESCO-IOC Tsunami Ready programme indicators in pilot communities.
All IOTWMS Member States have been strongly encouraged to conduct IOWave20 exercise up to community level and test the indicators of UNESCO-IOC Tsunami Ready programme in pilot communities.
Exercise IOWave20 will comprise three scenarios with simulated tsunami waves travelling across the Indian Ocean basin. Member States are invited to participate in either or all events, which will run in real time.
The IOTWMS Tsunami Service Providers (TSP) of Australia, India and Indonesia will provide exercise bulletins and detailed tsunami threat advice on their password-protected websites, and will send notification messages to the Tsunami Warning Focal Points (TWFP) as data is updated during the events.
An IOWave20 Exercise Manual was understood to have been distributed in advance with further details of the exercise scenarios and the exercise evaluation to be conducted afterwards.
To learn more
For more information and background documents on Exercise IOWave20
readers are invited to see here: http://www.ioc-tsunami.org/index.php?option=com_oe&task=viewEventRecord&eventID=2634
ICG/NEAMTWS and UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030)
The NEAMTWS will contribute to the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development 2021-2030, in particular by responding to the needs of society for a safe ocean where people are protected from ocean hazards.
The Inter-governmental Coordination Group for the Tsunami Early Warning and Mitigation System in the North-eastern Atlantic, the Mediterranean and connected seas (ICG/NEAMTWS) was formed in response to the tragic tsunami on 26 December 2004, in which over 250,000 lives were lost around the Indian Ocean region.
On an historical note Great Basses Lighthouse, Sri Lanka, was built by Trinity House, London, in 1872 – 1873 (see illustration © Trinity House). Masonry on the tower’s landing was damaged in the tsunami of 2004. Repairs were effected by a joint Trinity House, Northern Lighthouse Board team.
A new report from the FAO shows that while most fish stocks remain overexploited, the number of stocks subject to overfishing has decreased for the first time in decades. This was announced from FAO HQ in Rome in mid-December. Readers are invited to see the full report here: http://www.fao.org/documents/card/en/c/cb2429en
After decades of increasing human pressures on the Mediterranean and Black Sea marine ecosystems and fisheries resources, the latest data suggest that a corner is finally being turned on overexploitation of the region's vital fish stocks.
According to a new report on the State of Mediterranean and Black Sea Fisheries (SoMFi 2020), released on 14 December, while 75% of fish stocks remain subject to overfishing, this percentage fell by more than 10% between 2014 and 2018. Exploitation ratios are down by a similar proportion. Taking into account newly assessed stocks, the number of fish stocks with high relative biomass has doubled since the last edition published in 2018.
Crew changes are once more becoming difficult as much of the world locks down again following the emergence of several new and more transmissible variants of Covid-19, crew specialist Danica has warned.
With travel corridors being closed and new travel restrictions imposed, airlines are once again cancelling or reducing flights which poses a problem for crew transiting to vessels. It is understood from Danica that ports too, if they have reopened, are imposing greater restrictions.
Henrik Jensen (pictured), Managing Director of Danica Crewing Services, has warned: ‘I believe we may be heading for a new crew change crisis every bit as bad as last spring. Over the past six months crew changes have been possible in many cases, although they have been costly and complex. However, now we are seeing a range of new restrictions and barriers to crew travel while also facing some serious issues in relation to crew health risk factors. I can foresee this impacting heavily on crew changes for the next few months.’
Danica specialises in crew deployment and has been assisting a range of ship operators in order to achieve crew changes over the past year. As a result, the company is fully aware of the latest rules and restrictions and well-placed to notice how they are impacting crewing.
Jensen explained: ‘In response to the rapid increase in infections around the world, governments are imposing new or additional measures including travel restrictions. Although these measures are understandable in the circumstances, based on scientific evidence, and intended to provide protection for their populations, they also cause operational and logistical problems for crew changes.