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Manager of the Caribbean Tsunami Warning Program

Published 28th November 2016, 11:15am

Christa von Hillebrandt-Andrade, the Manager of the Caribbean Tsunami Warning Program and Chair of UNESCO IOC CARIBE EWS visited the Cayman Islands on Wednesday, November 23rd. Mrs. von Hillebrandt was on vacation with her family on board the Freedom of the Seas when she met the Director, McCleary Frederick and Deputy Director, Lee Madison of Hazard Management Cayman Islands, to see the tsunami warning sensor located in George Town Harbour.

The sensor, which was funded through a UNESCO grant, continually monitors sea level using both radar and pressure sensors. Data from the sensor is sent by satellite to numerous scientific institutes and if an unusual rise in sea level is detected, then scientists can analyze the information to determine if a warning should be issued for countries that could potentially be impacted by a tsunami wave. Several other similar sensors are located in other countries around the Caribbean, and these sensors may provide useful tsunami warming information for the Cayman Islands in the event that a tsunami is generated regionally.

Hazard Management Cayman Islands currently receives emergency messages about tsunamis from the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center. Tsunami warnings for the Cayman Islands will be issued by the Caribbean Tsunami Warning Centre (PTWC) in Puerto Rico once the Centre goes fully operational. Real time data generated by the Cayman Islands sea level monitoring station in George Town Harbour can be found on HMCI’s website www.caymanprepared.ky in the section dealing with the tsunami threat. Alternatively follow the link http://www.ioc-sealevelmonitoring.org/station.php?code=geor to directly access the sea level monitoring information.