The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has announced that the probability of a tsunami that could affect major cities in the Mediterranean or their surroundings within 30 years is close to 100% . Marseilles, Alexandria and Istanbul; It is one of the cities deemed at risk by UNESCO.
UNESCO will announce its program entitled “Ready for Tsunami” during the United Nations (UN) Conference on the Oceans which will be held in Lisbon, the capital of Portugal, from June 27 to July 1. This program is part of a larger effort to educate coastal communities at risk of tsunamis about potential disasters by 2030.
Audrey Azoulay, director of UNESCO, said the global tsunami warning system detects very quickly, but it is not enough to raise the alarm, and coastal communities must be properly educated to save lives. .
According to the organization’s report, to be “tsunami ready”, tsunami risk reduction plans must be prepared, tsunami hazard areas must be identified and mapped, educational materials must be prepared, user-friendly tsunami evacuation maps and information should be made public.
Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (IMM) completed “Istanbul Tsunami Information Booklets” in 2020, as a result of its cooperation with Middle East Technical University (METU) since 2018. These booklets , which include tsunami risk analysis and evacuation plans, are available and downloadable online.
At the end of May, as part of the IMM’s Tsunami Action Plan, warning signs began to be placed on the seashores in 17 districts of the city.
ISTANBUL IS IN DANGER
The risk of a tsunami hitting the Mediterranean coast is expected to increase as sea levels rise. UNESCO officials say communities in the Pacific and Indian Oceans where the tsunami occurred are generally aware of the dangers, but in other coastal areas, including the Mediterranean, this disaster is underestimated.
Next year, four at-risk Mediterranean coastal cities (Marseille, Alexandria, Istanbul, Cannes) and the town of Chipiona, near Cadiz on Spain’s Atlantic coast, will join 40 “tsunami-ready” cities in 21 countries.
Speaking to Britain’s Guardian newspaper, UNESCO tsunami expert Bernardo Aliaga said: “The 2004 and 2011 tsunamis were a wake-up call.
“We have come a long way since 2004. Today we are safer,” Aliaga said, continuing his words:
“However, there are gaps in preparedness and they need to be filled. We need to ensure warnings are understood by visitors and communities.”
In 2004, the deadliest tsunami ever in the Indian Ocean; Around 230,000 people have died in 14 countries. In 2011, the magnitude 9.1 earthquake and subsequent tsunami in Japan, reaching a height of about 40 meters, caused the death of 18,000 people.
UNESCO’s Pacific Tsunami Warning Center has issued a warning message 125 times since 2004, before a tsunami hit.
One of the deadliest earthquakes in history hit Portugal in 1755, causing a 6-meter-high tsunami to hit Lisbon, the capital, and Cadiz, Spain. It was recorded that 50,000 people lost their lives in the earthquake, then the loss of life increased with fires and tsunamis.
In Istanbul, many houses were flooded in Galata due to the tsunami after the great earthquake of September 14, 1509.