The Indian Tsunami Early Warning Centre (ITEWC) will be upgraded to a global tsunami warning system by networking it with other tsunami warning centres across the world, an official source has said.
Established in 2007, the centre at Hyderabad has been serving as the primary source of tsunami advisories for India and after October 2011, as the regional tsunami advisory service provider for the entire Indian Ocean region.
Besides India, Australia and Indonesia also issue tsunami alerts to the Indian Ocean nations.
The ITEWC’s responsibilities include detection and determination of potentially tsunamigenic earthquakes occurring in the Indian Ocean.
The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center (US) and the Japan Meteorological Agency (Japan) issue tsunami alerts for the Pacific Ocean region. They also provide interim service for the Indian Ocean nations.
“Once we upgrade the ITEWC, we can also issue tsunami warnings to the Pacific Ocean region,” Shailesh Nayak, secretary, Ministry of Earth Sciences told Hindustan Times.
Under the Indian centre, there are 1,800 coastal forecast points, said Nayak, adding, “These (points) should be upgraded.”
The objective behind upgrading the Indian tsunami centre, he said, was to standardise the forecasting system across the world.
“We have the expertise. We are gradually building a working group for the global system.”
A study published in the Current Science had lauded the role of Indian tsunami centre, saying it performed exceptionally well in issuing advisories for the April 2012 tsunami off the Sumatra coast.