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Update 2009

Round table on early warning systems: Global Platform 2009

* Date:2 June 2009
* Source(s):United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction Secretariat (UNISDR)


Early warning systems (EWS) have received significant international attention over the past few years. Over the last 50 years the recorded numbers of disasters caused by natural hazards, and the associated economic losses have increased, loss of life associated with some hazards has decreased significantly. This has been attributed to the development of early warning systems in conjunction with emergency preparedness and response planning in a number of high-risk countries around the world. For an early warning system to be effective, it needs to be built upon four components including:

- Observation, detection, monitoring, analysis, forecasting and development of hazard warning messages;
- Assessing potential risks and integrating risk information into warning messages;
- Dissemination of timely and reliable and understandable warning messages to authorities and public at-risk;
- Community-based emergency planning, preparedness and training programmes focused on eliciting an effective response to warnings to reduce potential impact on lives and livelihoods.



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