A tsunami is a series of seismic and large ocean waves resulted from an enormous displacement of the sea floor. This is usually caused by underwater disturbances such as underwater landslides, volcanic eruptions and earthquakes at tectonic boundaries under the sea. The size of a tsunami can vary from a meter high to a more than 300 meters high in size! 

Tsunamis are dangerous and can destroy properties, infrastructures, buildings and worst – kill lives. Drowning is the most common cause of death associated with tsunami. It can happen anytime, anywhere along coasts. 

Here are some tips of how you can be prepared, handle and survive a tsunami attack. 

 Preparation Before a Tsunami Attack: 

  1. Learn the risk of tsunami in your location especially if you are living near a coastal area.
  2. If you are a tourist, acquaint yourself in the local safety evacuation protocols of the place. Know the safe evacuation routes and zones in your community.
  3. Identify risk or potential dangers of flooding in your house or the place you are currently residing. 
  4. Secure an emergency preparedness kitand a bag with basic supplies which includes medications, water, flashlight and important essentials for at least 48 hrs.
  5. Create a family escape plan and a place where you can meet in case of separation. 

Surviving During a Tsunami Attack: 

  1. An early warning sign of a tsunami is an occurrence of an earthquake. Protect yourself first during an earthquake and follow the Drop, Cover and Hold safety protocol. 
  2. Another indication of a tsunami attack is a recession of water levels below an unexpected low tide. Stay out of the water and get to higher ground immediately as far as possible.
  3. If you are caught in the water, grab something that floats to save you from drowning.
  4. KEEP CALM and DON’T PANIC. 

Be Safe After a Tsunami Attack: 

  1. Inform your loved ones you’re safe and where you are. 
  2. Listen and check for the local news and updates to stay informed of the situation.
  3. Follow the authorities and return only when it is safe and the authorities told you to do so. 

Earthquakes cannot be predicted. But once an earthquake has occurred, tsunami can possibly be anticipated. During a natural disaster and emergency, situational awareness, sufficient preparation and knowledge in preventive measures are needed to keep us better protected from future disasters such as tsunami. 

Remember, ‘We cannot stop natural disasters but we can arm ourselves with knowledge’. Be vigilant.

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