About ITIC



What is ITIC?

IMG 1318 web

International Tsunami Information Center
NOAA Inouye Regional Center
1845 Wasp Boulevard, Building 176
Honolulu, HI  96816
USA
E-mail:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Tel:  +1 808 725 6050
Fax:  +1 808 725 6055
Map and Directions to ITIC

  

Located in Honolulu, the International Tsunami Information Centre (ITIC) was established Resolution IV-6 in November 1965 by the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). It is hosted by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration National Weater Service, who provides the Director and office staff in Honolulu, Hawaii.  Since 1998, Chileʻs Naval Hydrographic and Oceanographic Service (Servicio Hidrográfico y Oceanográfico de la Armada de Chile) has provided the Associate Director.  ITICʻs mandate and functions in support of Member States of the Intergovernmeantl Coordination Group for the Pacific Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System (ICG/PTWS, formerly ITSU) were approved by IOC Resolution X-23 (1977).  ITIC maintains and develops relationships with scientific research and academic organizations, civil defense agencies, and the general public in order to carry out its mission to mitigate the hazards associated with tsunamis by improving tsunami preparedness for all Pacific Ocean nations.  ITIC is also assisting in the development and implementation of tsunami warning and mitigation systems globally (IOC Resolutions XXIII-12, 13, and 14 (Indian, Caribbean, and Mediterranean respectively,2005).

The ITIC's responsibilities include:

  • monitoring the international tsunami warning activities in the Pacific and other oceans and recommending improvements in communications, data networks, acquisition and processing, tsunami forecasting methods, and information dissemination;
  • bringing to Member and non-member States information on tsunami warning systems, on the affairs of IOC and ITIC, and on how to become active participants in the ICG/PTWS;
  • assisting Member States in the establishment of national and regional warning systems, and the reduction of tsunami risk through comprehensive mitigation programmes;
  • acting as a clearinghouse for the development of educational and preparedness materials, event data collection, and the fostering research and its application to prevent loss of life

 

IOC Resolution IV-6 (1965, establishment of ITSU and ITIC)
IOC Resolution X-23 (1977, mandate and functions of ITIC for the Pacific)
IOC Resolution EC-XXI.4 (1988, amendment to ITIC mandate as supported by IOC and Member States)
IOC Resolution EC-IV.6 (1974, establishment of ITIC Associate Director)
IOC Resolution XXIII-12, 13, 14 (2005, request for ITIC to support global system development)
IOC Resolution EC-XXXIX.8 (2006, renaming of ITSU to PTWS with ITIC as interim PTWS Secretariat 2005-2007)


ITIC Working with ICG/PTWS

Coastal areas of responsibility of PTWC, WC/ATWC, and NWPTAC in the PTWS.

Under the auspices of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC), the Intergovernmental Coordination Group for the Pacific Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System first convened in 1968 (ICG/PTWS, formerly known as ICG/ITSU for International Tsunami).  An international cooperative effort involving many Member States of the Pacific Region, ICG/PTWS meets regularly to review progress and coordinate activities resulting in improvements of the service. 

ptws designations

no official ptws designations

 

 

The IOC maintains the International Tsunami Information Centre (ITIC). Established in 1965 and staffed by the U.S.A and Chile, the ITIC works closely with NOAA’s Richard H. Hagemeyer Pacific Tsunami Warning Center (PTWC), and other international tsunami centres such as Japan's Northwest Pacific Tsunami Advisory Center (NWPTAC) and NOAA's US National Tsunami Warning Center (US NTWC).

ITIC's primary responsibilities also include:

  • monitoring the international tsunami warning activities in the Pacific and other oceans and recommending improvements in communications, data networks, acquisition and processing, tsunami forecasting methods, and information dissemination;
  • bringing to Member and non-member States information on tsunami warning systems, on the affairs of IOC and ITIC, and on how to become participants in the global TWS;
  • assisting Member States in the establishment of national and regional warning systems, and the reduction of tsunami risk through comprehensive mitigation programmes;
  • acting as a clearinghouse for the development of educational and preparedness materials, event data collection, and the fostering research and its application to prevent loss of life;
  • serves as the Secretariat for the ICG/PTWS.


The PTWC serves as the operational warning headquarters for the Pacific Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System. PTWC works closely with other international, sub-regional and national centers in monitoring seismic and sea level stations around the Pacific Ocean for large earthquakes and tsunami waves. The PTWS makes use of more than 400 high-quality seismic stations around the world to locate potentially tsunamigenic earthquakes, and accesses nearly 400 coastal and deep-ocean sea level stations globally to verify the generation and evaluate the severity of a tsunami. The system disseminates tsunami information and warning messages to designated national authorities in over 100 locations across the Pacific. Sub-regional centres such as the US NTWC and NWPTAC provide regional alerts to the U.S.A. west coast, Alaska and Canada, and the northwest Pacific and South China Sea regions, respectively.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System is one of the most successful international scientific programmes with the direct humanitarian aim of mitigating the effects of tsunami to save lives and property.

 

*Not IOC Member State, 1China, 2Federated States of Micronesia, 3Marshall Islands, 4France, 5UK, 6US

 

Updated 20 July 2012

 

ITIC Working with Others

The ITIC of the IOC maintains and develops relationships with:

Intergovernmental Organizations

All Member States of UNESCO, IOC and its Intergovernmental Coordination Groups for Tsunami Warning and Mitigation; International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics (IUGG); World Data System Centers (WDS); World Meteorological Organization (WMO); International Hydrographic Organizaton (IHO); United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UN/ISDR), UN and other regional development, environmental, and technical aganecies in disaster risk reduction.


Non-Governmental Organizations

International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), Asian Disaster Reduction Center (ADRC), Asia Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC).


The Scientific Community

Research and academic organizations, universities, and institutions worldwide. The ITIC Training Programme (ITP) provides opportunities for scientists to work on risk assessment, tsunami inundation modelling to estimate flooding impact, or other tsunami-related problems. The Programme can also facilitates the exchange of scientific and technical personnel between Member States for the purpose of providing familiarization with monitoring equipment, seismic evaluation and wave forecasting, and operational procedures of tsunami warning centres and emergency response and public safety procedures of civil defence agencies or disaster management organizations.


Local Authorities

ITIC informs Member States of developments in tsunami research and education. ITIC initiates, co-ordinates, and/or conducts technical training programmes, workshops, and seminars dealing with all aspects of tsunami preparedeness. ITIC aims to make authorities more aware of the tsunami hazard, and assists in planning programs for the protection of life and property and for evacuations from dangerous areas during tsunami warnings.


The General Public

ITIC informs the general public of the tsunami hazard through lectures, publications, educational materials and disaster preparedness programs. ITIC provides information on the latest tsunami alerts issued by the PTWC, NWPTAC, and US NTWC.

ITIC Activities

ITIC Engages in the Following Activities:

Tsunami Education, Preparedness, Training

 
Tsunami risk reduction requires a comprehensive approach consisting of warning guidance, risk assessment, and preparedness and education.  An effective tsunami warning system requires activities in all components.  ITIC’s mitigation programme is directed towards coastal residents, their national and local officials, school teachers, mass media, policy makers, and the general public.  It includes training classes, lectures, community briefings, and media broadcasts.   ITIC materials include informational booklets, textbooks, lecture materials, audio-visual aids, posters, photographs, television and radio materials, and other publications.  A prepared and aware public will know immediately how to respond when a tsunami emergency is declared.  ITIC works with governments and civil society organizations to implement community-based mitigation programmes that will reduce tsunami impacts and save lives.
 
Under ITIC's ITP-Hawaii Programme on tsunami warning and mitigation systems, scientists, engineers, and tsunami programme officials can spend up to three weeks in Hawaii at ITIC, PTWC, and with local civil defense agencies learning about tsunamis,operations of tsunami warning systems, risk assessment, and education and preparedness programmes.  ITIC also conducts the ITP-International Programme, which annually visits Member States to provide in-country capacity assessments, and tsunami awareness and technology training.

Tsunami Research

For each tsunami, ITIC assists the World Data System (Marine Geology and Geophysics-Tsunamis), co-located at the NOAA National Geophsyical Data Center, in soliciting and collecting seismic information and tsunami wave records, together with supplementary data and descriptive information on tsunami damage. ITIC prepares and disseminates a report on the tsunami through its Tsunami Newsletter published quarterly.

ITIC maintains an extensive data file and comprehensive library that researchers, government officals, and the public can use. ITIC identifies research needed to improve tsunami prediction and the International Warning System. It cooperates with national, international, and professional organizations in encouraging and applying tsunami research. ITIC facilitates and coordinates International Tsunami Survey Teams to conduct field investigations of destructive large tsunami, following the procedures and guidance provided in the IOC Post-Tsunami Survey Field Guide (updated 2012, draft). 

Tsunami Technology and Information

ITIC arranges for the availability of technical information required for an effective tsunami warning system. It ensures that knowledge of new technology and mitigation countermeasures is available to all Member States. It arranges for the provision of advisory and consultative services to Member States wishing to initiate or upgrade their warning and mitigation system capability. ITIC works closely with the IOC ICGs and their Intersessional Working Groups to identify and recommend programme enhancements to the regional tsunami warning systems and to Member State national systems.  It provides tsunami data and information to scientists, engineers, administrators, and the general public throughout the world.

ITIC Public Relations and Publications

Public Relations

ITIC maintains working relationships with national and international organizations participating in the International Tsunami Warning System. Public relations are maintained with the media with the goal of achieving an informed public.


Publications

ITIC prepares and publishes tsunami research reports and papers, historical tsunami catalogs, glossaries, bibliographies, books, and educational materials. It maintains a web site through the IOC with information on the International Tsunami Warning System with FAQs on tsunamis and tsunami preparedness. It publishes the Tsunami Newsletter that brings to researchers, engineers, educators, and government officials a summary of the year's tsunamis and other activities related to the Tsunami Warning System. It is distributed to approximately forty countries and is available electronically and in hard copy.

NOAA Daniel K. Inouye Regional Center (IRC)

On 04 March 2014, ITIC moved offices from downtown Honolulu to the Daniel K. Inouye Regional Center (IRC) on Ford Island. Built on a national historic landmark site, the main facility repurposes two World War II-era aircraft hangars and links them with a newly constructed third edifice to create a single 310,000 square foot building.

IRC

The ground floor of the main entrance boasts a three-story high central atrium containing a comprehensive exhibit area with pictures, videos, signage and artifacts depicting various NOAA programs, as well as a library, auditorium, media room and cafeteria. ITIC and PTWC are located on the third floor of the IRC.

ITIC receptionThe facility’s design, inspired by Hawaiʻi’s climate and culture to feature wind, water and sun, utilizes natural lighting, the absence of mechanical fans, and passive cooling and ventilation systems supported by a seawater well. It also captures renewable energy through solar photovoltaic and solar thermal systems. NOAA’s Science on a Sphere projection system hangs seemingly in midair in the lobby of the main building, (bottom right image). The facility is Leadership in Environmental and Energy Design (LEED) Gold Certified.

Science on a SphereIn January 2013, the center was named in honor of Senator Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaiʻi), the nation's longest-serving senator and a decorated World War II combat veteran who died in December 2012, in recognition of his significant contribution to ocean and environmental issues and his steadfast support for the construction of the campus. On December 16, 2013, an official blessing ceremony was held to dedicate the facility.

Download IRC brochure, click here. (501kb)

Visit IRC website, click here.

Directions to ITIC and IRC, click here.

ITIC Staff

Dr. Laura S.L. Kong
Director
International Tsunami Information Center
1845 Wasp Blvd., Building 176
Honolulu, HI 96818  USA
Tel: <1> (808) 725 6051
Fax: <1> (808) 725 6055
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Lt. Carlos A. Zúñiga 
Associate Director 
Head, Oceanography Dept.
Servicio Hidrográfico y Oeanográfico de la Armada (SHOA) de Chile
Errazuriz 254 Playa Ancha
Valparaíso, CHILE
Phone: <56> 32-2766671
Fax: <56> 32-2766542
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Brian S. Yanagi
Disaster Management Specialist
Office Manager
International Tsunami Information Center
1845 Wasp Blvd., Building 176
Honolulu, HI 96818  USA
Tel: <1> (808) 725 6052
Fax: <1> (808) 725 6055
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Nicolás P. Arcos
Technical Information Specialist
International Tsunami Information Center
1845 Wasp Blvd., Building 176
Honolulu, HI 96818  USA
Tel: <1> (808) 725 6053
Fax: <1> (808) 725 6055
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Tammy W. L. Fukuji
Information Technology Specialist
International Tsunami Information Center
1845 Wasp Blvd., Building 176
Honolulu, HI 96818  USA
Tel: <1> (808) 725 6054
Fax: <1> (808) 725 6055
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Arthur Sonen
Administrative Assistant
International Tsunami Information Center
1845 Wasp Blvd., Building 176
Honolulu, HI 96818  USA
Tel: <1> (808) 725 6050
Fax: <1> (808) 725 6055
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.




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Where the First Wave Arrives in Minutes

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TsunamiTeacher

DVD copies for PC and Macintosh computers are available free of charge from the ITIC, Hawaii (itic.tsunami@noaa.gov).

Hosted by:
UNESCO/IOC Project Office for IODE Oostende, Belgium
© 2014 International Tsunami Information Center | A UNESCO/IOC-NOAA Partnership
1845 Wasp Boulevard, Building 176, Honolulu, HI 96818, USA | Tel: +1 808 725 6050 | Fax: +1 808 725 6055