Thailand population

Nearly 70 million people in Thailand will be protected by new early warning and risk monitoring technologies

The National Government of Thailand and the Pacific Disaster Center (PDC) have just implemented a new early warning and risk monitoring system called ThaiAWARE. The system will provide advanced decision support capabilities to the country’s disaster managers and help protect its 70 million people and millions of visitors who make Thailand a vacation destination every year.

“Early warning is a very important function and has been proven to save lives and reduce disaster losses,” said Regional Adviser Harlan Hale of the USAID Humanitarian Aid Office. “Unfortunately, due to the impacts of climate change, especially in this region, we can expect more disasters and possibly more severe disasters. USAID has provided critical financial support to the ThaiAWARE project over the past few years. ThaiAWARE provides decision-makers with dynamic, real-time information from international and national sources and offers the world’s most advanced multi-risk exposure modeling capabilities on a single platform. This comprehensive system for disaster managers in Thailand enables them to take action, which means a faster response. Faster response means better response with less impact and faster recovery.

“I believe that the ThaiAWARE system will become an important tool to make Thailand resilient,” said the director general of the Thai Department for Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM), Boontham Lertsukekasem, who expressed his appreciation for the funded project. by USAID and stressed its importance in improving early warning for Thailand. “We would like to reiterate our sincere gratitude to USAID and the PDC for your support. “

DDPM and PDC, an applied science and technology center at the University of Hawaii, celebrated the launch of the new ThaiAWARE system in a virtual ceremony on December 15 marking the completion of the project. Various governmental and non-governmental stakeholders participated, including representatives of the DDPM, the National Disaster Warning Center (NDWC), the ASEAN Coordination Center for Humanitarian Assistance (AHA Center), the ‘USAID and more.

It was in the aftermath of the devastating M9.0 earthquake and tsunami in the Indian Ocean in 2004 that the Thai government first partnered with PDC. “The PDC was at zero point during the formation of the Thai NDWC and we helped implement the country’s first early warning system in partnership with the DDPM in 2006,” said Chris Chiesa, Deputy Executive Director of the PDC. . The initial system, now known as ThaiAWARE, was DisasterAWARE’s first custom remote PDC deployment in Asia, and only the second globally. “The system we just launched with the Thai government includes the new early warning and multiple risk monitoring technologies offered in DisasterAWARE, as well as critical predictive risk impact analysis tools and hundreds of new National data layers to support effective preparedness and response, ”Chiesa added.

Chiesa explained that this is another milestone in a long-standing partnership spanning more than 15 years, where he anticipates exciting new developments over the coming year. He shared details of a pending program funded by the United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) that will leverage the ThaiAWARE system for public alerting.

This will enable mass notification, ”Chiesa said of the project scheduled for early 2022.“ This will allow residents and visitors to Thailand to receive disaster notifications for tsunamis, floods, wildfires and COVID epidemics. We very much hope to launch this project very soon.

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