At its 10th Session held in Muscat, Oman in March 2015, the Intergovernmental Coordination Group for the Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System (ICG/IOTWMS) decided to organise an Indian Ocean Wave Exercise (IOWave16) in 2016 and established a Task Team to plan and conduct the exercise. At its recent intersessional meeting held in Hyderabad, India on 13th November, the Task Team decided to conduct the IOWave16 exercise on 7th and 8th September 2016. This letter provides details of the exercise in which all IOTWMS Member States are encouraged to participate to the extent possible.

Exercise IOWave16 will simulate Indian Ocean countries being put in a tsunami warning situation and require the National Tsunami Warning Centre (NTWC) and the National and/or Local Disaster Management Offices (NDMO/LDMO) in each country to implement their Standard Operating Procedures (SOP). A significant observation from Exercise IOWave14, held in September 2014, was that only three countries included any form of community evacuation drill in the exercise. A primary objective of IOWave16 therefore is to encourage more countries to involve coastal communities in the exercise to test the SOPs and communications links at all levels of the warning chain.

The exercise will be held in Kerala on 8th September 2016 with the simulated scenario of a magnitude 9.0 earthquake in the Makran Trench south of Iran and Pakistan. This scenario will generate simulated tsunami waves travelling across the Indian Ocean basin. The Makran Trench scenario will commence at 11.30 hours IST on 8th September.

Government of Kerala has decided to participate in the IOWave16 exercise by conducting an end to end communication test and evacuation in one village each in the districts of Kasargode, Kozhikode, Alappuzha and Thiruvananthapuram.

Final report of the IoWave 2016 – Kerala may be found here