Workshop on School Earthquake and Tsunami Safety

GeoHazards International organized a workshop to reduce risks and improve preparedness in school earthquake and tsunami safety in APEC economies. Earthquakes, tsunamis and volcanic activity struck APEC economies frequently during the last decade with devastating effects on children and schools.

The damage from earthquakes, tsunamis and volcanic activity has disrupted education and diminished educational opportunities desperately needed by future generations and for economic growth. However, recent events also demonstrated that comprehensive policies consistently carried out over time can significantly reduce damage and consequences in future events.

In support of reducing the risk from natural hazards in all APEC economies, the United States, Chinese Taipei, Australia, New Zealand and Peru sponsored a collaborative project, School Earthquake and Tsunami Safety in APEC Economies, Reducing Risks and Improving Preparedness. APEC’s Emergency Preparedness Working Group (EPWG) held a workshop on October 17 to 19, 2011 in Chinese Taipei to further collaboration, discussion of lessons learned and concerns.

South East Asia. U.S. Navy image US Navy 050102-N-9593M-031.

It featured: Experts reported on school building vulnerability and case studies from recent hatural hazard events; a field trip to the central area of Taiwan, which was struck by the September 21, 1999 Chi-Chi earthquake, a visit to badly damaged schools and schools that were rebuilt after the earthquake.

The workshop was sponsored by the United States, Chinese Taipei, Peru, Australia, and New Zealand. The United States Department of State and the United States Geological serve as the project overseers. The National Science & Technology Center for Disaster Reduction (NCRM) of Chinese Taipei is providing local support and sponsoring the field trip, banquets and other activities.

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