The MAAT Museum in Belém also overlooks the Tagus Estuary, Source: Unsplash

Lisbon installs a tsunami warning system

Lisbon installs a tsunami warning system

It features sirens, digital panels, evacuation signs and routes to safer meeting points

The Lisbon City Council unveiled the city’s Tsunami Warning and Alert System this past weekend at the Parish of Belém on the Tagus River Estuary.

The reason for the installation of the system is because of the high-risk seismic and coastal location of the Portuguese capital, which has already suffered massive devastation in the 1755 earthquake, which was also accompanied by a tsunami wave.

Elements of the system

The two sirens, or the auditory warning components, are located in Praça do Império and Ribeira das Naus.

"The phenomenon of climate change imposes an increased urgency on us today to prepare Lisbon for major occurrences or catastrophes, such as tsunamis," said the councillor for Civil Protection, Ângelo Pereira, at the presentation of the project, which took place at the Museum of Arte Popular.

The unveiling of the system was also accompanied by an evacuation exercise for the attending residents, who familiarized themselves with the activation of the sound signal. Likewise, self-protection measures and behaviours were disclosed to the public.

The evacuation exercise – supported by the Parish Council of Belém and Neighbours of Belém Association – made participants aware of the sound of installed sirens, information digital panels, evacuation signs and routes to the meeting point.

The riverside area of ​​Lisbon is exposed to the effects of a tsunami, in particular the area between Belém and Santa Apolónia, where the hazard index of flooding caused by a tsunami is "extreme" in an earthquake with a magnitude of 8.75 degrees in the Richter scale, according to data presented by the Municipal Civil Protection Service.

"Furthermore, we are going to start several actions to enlighten the public, with an awareness campaign in schools and with the dissemination of content to raise awareness and inform citizens," indicated the Civil Protection councillor, as quoted by Diario de Noticias, reinforcing that the prevention of tsunamis is one of the great concerns of the city council in terms of people's safety.



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