11 disaster monitoring stations set up

National, Normal

The National, Thursday October 24th, 2013

 EFFORTS to monitor and contain damage caused by earthquakes have been enhanced with the installation of monitoring stations in strategic locations around the country.  

The stations are located in Manus, Wewak (East Sepik), Tabubil (Western), Mt Hagen (Western Highlands), Lae (Morobe), Port Moresby (NCD), Alotau (Milne Bay), Misima (Milne Bay), Buka (Bougainville), Kavieng (New Ireland) and Kimbe (West New Britain).

They will monitor the occurrence of earthquakes by providing updated or real-time seismic readings. 

Acting director of the Port Moresby Geophysical Observatory Chris McKee said improvement to the work of monitoring and containing hazards caused by earthquakes would enable Papua New Guinea to be informed and resilient. 

He said the improvement was significant because it would provide full coverage in the country.

Secretary for Department of Mineral Policy and Geo-hazard Management Shadrach Himata said the new seismic network was a significant achievement of the geo-hazard monitoring system in PNG. 

“It is fulfilling part of the vision of creating state-of-the-art monitoring system in PNG by 2015. The next challenge is sustaining the network for which the government’s financial support is vital,” he said. 

The installations of the stations were made possible by the European Union through the disaster risk reduction project.

It was implemented by the Applied Geoscience and Technology division, Secretariat of the Pacific Community. 

About 30% of the €3.3 million (K11.86 million) was allocated by the European Union towards strengthening early warning systems in PNG. 

The stations will use Telikom PNG Limited’s services to relay the information to the observatory in Port Moresby.