General Outline of the Exercise

For the CARIBE WAVE 2022 Regional Exercise, two scenarios have been proposed for the participants the Western Muertos Trough and the Northern Panama Scenario.  The first scenario will simulate a tsunami generated by an 8.0 Mw earthquake located in Western Muertos Trough, at 256 km west-southwest of Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico. The second scenario simulates a tsunami generated by an 8.3 Mw earthquake located in Northern Panama.

The participants in the Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands Region (Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, and the British Virgin Islands) may use the Western Muertos Trough scenario as an agreement for their region.

For this CARIBE WAVE 2022 Communication Exercise, the scenario is based on earthquakes and tsunamis that occurred in Western Muertos Trough. For the purposes of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands Region, an earthquake with an epicenter located south of the Dominican Republic at western Muertos Trough is considered a regional earthquake.  The earthquake scenario used for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, based on this exercise, is as follows:

 

Origin Time14:00:00 UTC March 10, 2022
Latitude17.58º N
Longitude69.50º W
Magnitude8.0 – Mw
Depth2.5 km

In a real situation, for an event like this one, a tsunami warning/advisory/watch, could last many more hours than those proposed in this exercise.  This exercise has been adapted to be concluded in a compressed time.

Earthquake Scenario

For this CARIBE WAVE 2022 communication exercise, the scenario is based on the observations related to a tsunami generated by a magnitude 8.0 earthquake located at Western Muertos Trough.  For Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands Region, an earthquake with an epicenter at 256 km W-SW of Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico is considered a regional earthquake.

The earthquake scenario used for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, based on this exercise, is as follows:

Earthquake:    Western Muertos Trough Scenario

Origin Time:     March 10, 2022, 14:00 UTC (10:00 AM Puerto Rico Local Time)

Hypocenter:    Latitude: 17.58°N and Longitude: 69.50°W

Depth:             2.5 km

Magnitude:     8.0 – Mw

Location:         West of Mona Island

 

For the Western Muertos Trough Scenario, a seismic source rupture from an 8.0 magnitude earthquake was used.

The ShakeMap and the Prompt Assessment of Global Earthquakes for Response (PAGER), of the US Geological Survey, for the Northern Lesser Antilles Scenario, are available in the IOC Participant Handbook.

The Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands Region participants will use the Western Muertos Trough Scenario and should refer to the CARIBE WAVE 2022 PRSN web page, and the products emitted by PRSN and PTWC.

CARIBE WAVE helps prove that the evacuation plan for a tsunami in your town is a viable one and covers all the necessities during and after an emergency.

Shakemap of the Western Muertos Trough scenario for the Caribe Wave 2022 Exercise.

The TsunamiReady program was created by the NWS-NOAA to help communities be better prepared to save lives and reduce the damage caused by the occurrence of a tsunami.

Tsunami Scenario

For this CARIBE WAVE 2022 communication exercise, the scenario is based on the observations related to a tsunami generated by a magnitude 8.0 earthquake located in Western Muertos Trough.  For Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands Region, an earthquake with an epicenter at 256 km west-southwest of Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico is considered a regional earthquakeThe tsunami scenario used for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, based on this exercise, is as follows:

 

A tsunami generated by an earthquake of magnitude 8.0 Mw at Western Muertos Trough with an epicenter in the latitude 17.58° N and longitude 69.50° W), at 10:00 am (Puerto Rico Local Time) on March 10, 2022.

 

Participants of Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, and the British Virgin Islands should refer to the information on this webpage based on the PTWC domestic products (see the timeline available on this webpage).   The initial alert is disseminated at 10:07 AM (local time in Puerto Rico) as indicated in Table 1-Exercise Timetable for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands for the Western Muertos Trough Scenario.

 

The initial dummy messages will be disseminated over all their standard broadcast channels at the beginning of the exercise.  The dummy messages are issued to test communications with Tsunami Warning Focal Points and National Tsunami Warning Centers and to start the CARIBE WAVE 2022 exercise.  All messages will be sent to the recipients on the PRSN official service list used to transmit real messages in real-time as part of the communication exercise.

 

The Participant Official Handbook prepared by the IOC (ICG/CARIBE-EWS) contains the information for international participants of all Caribbean countries.  These products are information on the earthquake and tsunami scenarios, timetables, and international products issued by the PTWC for this exercise.

Exercise Time Table

Western Muertos Trough Scenario

The tsunami occurs on March 10, 2022, at 14:00 UTC and is generated by an earthquake of magnitude 8.0 Mw with an epicenter located at latitude 17.58 ºN and longitude 69.50 ºW, Western Muertos Through.  This regional earthquake is located 173.9 km west of Mona Island and 256 km west-southwest Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico. The Dummy will be issued at 14:00 UTC and the initial alert level will be issued at 14:07 UTC, as established in the PTWC Domestic Products for the exercise.

Date (UTC)Time (UTC)Local Time
PTWC Message
#Type
DummyEmail
03/10/202214:0010:00 am
Earthquake Occurs
03/10/202214:0710:07 am01WarningYesYes
03/10/202214:3010:30 am02WarningNoYes
03/10/202215:0011:00 am03WarningNoYes
03/10/202215:3011:30 am04WarningNoYes
03/10/202216:0012:00 pm05WarningNoYes
03/10/202216:3012:30 pm06WarningNoYes
03/10/202217:001:00 pm07WarningNoYes
03/10/202217:301:30 pm08WarningNoYes
03/10/202218:002:00 pm09WarningNoYes
03/10/202218:302:30 pm10AdvisoryNoYes
03/10/202219:003:00 pm11AdvisoryNoYes
03/10/202219:303:30 pm12AdvisoryNoYes
03/10/202220:004:00 pm13CancellationNoYes

Exercise Purpose

The purpose of the exercise is to improve tsunami warning system effectiveness in the Caribbean and adjacent regions. The exercise provides an opportunity for emergency management organizations throughout the region to exercise their operational lines of communications, review their tsunami response procedures, and promote tsunami preparedness. Regular exercising of response plans is critical to maintaining readiness for an emergency. This is particularly true for the Caribbean and adjacent regions, where tsunamis are infrequent but can be of very high impact. Every Emergency Management Organization (EMO) is encouraged to participate.

Exercise Objectives

Each organization can develop its objectives for the exercise depending on its level of involvement in the scenario. The following are the exercise’s overarching objectives.

 

  • To exercise and evaluate operations of the CARIBE EWS Tsunami Warning System.
  • Exercise and evaluate communications between Regional Tsunami Service Provider and Members States/Territories.
    • Validate the issuance of tsunami products from the PTWC.
    • Validate the receipt of tsunami products by CARIBE-EWS Tsunami Warning Focal Points (TWFPs) and/or National Tsunami Warning Centers (NTWCs).
  • Evaluate the tsunami procedures and programs within Members States/Territories.
    • Validate readiness to respond to a tsunami.
    • Validate the operational readiness of the TWFPs/NTWCs and/or the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO).
    • Improve operational readiness. Before the exercise, ensure appropriate tools and response plan(s) have been developed, including public education materials.
    • Validate that the dissemination of warnings and information/advice by TWFPs and NTWCs, to relevant in-country agencies and the public is accurate and timely.
    • Evaluate the status of the implementation of the pilot CARIBE-EWS Tsunami Ready recognition program.

Types of Exercises

Exercises stimulate the development, training, testing, and evaluation of disaster plans and Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). Exercise participants are encouraged to use their own past multi-hazard drills (e.g., flood, hurricane, tsunami, earthquake, etc.) as a framework to conduct Exercise Caribe Wave 2022.  Due to restrictions establish to controls COVID-19, each country and agency need to determine the scale and complexity level of the exercise they want to prepare.  This document highlights four types of exercises, each of which will be more or less suitable depending on the objectives that have been set, the time available, funding levels, and how much the participants know on how to react to instructional warnings.

The exercises can be conducted at various scales of magnitude and sophistication.  The following are examples of types of exercises conducted by EMOs:

  • Orientation/Seminar:

An Orientation Exercise lays the groundwork for a comprehensive exercise program. It is a planned event, developed to bring together individuals and officials with a role or interest in multi-hazard response planning, problem-solving, development of standard operational procedures (SOPs), and resource integration and coordination. An Orientation Exercise will have a specific goal and written objectives and result in an agreed-upon Plan of Action.

  • Drill:

The Drill is a planned activity that tests, develops, and/or maintains skills in a single or limited emergency response procedure. Drills generally involve the operational response of single departments or agencies. Drills can involve internal notifications and/or field activities.

  • Tabletop Exercise:

The Tabletop Exercise is a planned activity in which local officials, key staff, and organizations with disaster management responsibilities are presented with simulated emergency situations. It is usually informal, in a conference room environment, and is designed to elicit constructive discussion from the participants. Participants will examine and attempt to resolve problems, based on plans and procedures if they exist. Individuals are encouraged to discuss decisions in depth with emphasis on slow-paced problem solving, rather than rapid, real-time decision-making. A Tabletop Exercise should have specific goals, objectives, and a scenario narrative (see Annex II for an Exercise Guideline).

  • Functional Exercise:

A Functional Exercise is a planned activity designed to test and evaluate organizational capacities. It is also utilized to evaluate the capability of a community’s emergency management system by testing the Emergency Operations Plan (EOP). It is based on a simulation of a real emergency situation that includes a description of the situation (narrative) with communications between players and simulators. The Functional Exercise gives the players (decision-makers) a fully simulated experience of being in a major disaster event. It should take place at the appropriate coordination location (i.e. emergency operations center, emergency command center, command post, master control center, etc.) and involve all the appropriate members designated by the plan. Both internal and external agencies (government, private sector, and volunteer agencies) should be involved. It requires players, controllers, simulators, and evaluators. Message traffic will be simulated and inserted by the control team for player response/actions, under real-time constraints. It may or may not include public evacuations. A Functional Exercise should have specific goals, objectives, and a scenario narrative.

  • Full-scale Exercise:

A Full-scale Exercise is the culmination of a progressive exercise program that has grown with the capacity of the community to conduct exercises. A Full-Scale Exercise is a planned activity in a “challenging” environment that encompasses a majority of the emergency management functions. This type of exercise involves the actual mobilization and deployment of the appropriate personnel and resources needed to demonstrate operational capabilities. EOCs and other command centers are required to be activated. A Full-scale Exercise is the largest, costliest, and most complex exercise type. It may or may not include public evacuations.

Evacuation drill of a school in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico.

Download the Caribe Wave 2022 Participants Handbook by clicking on the image.

Participants Manual

For the CARIBE WAVE 2022 Regional Exercise, two scenarios have been proposed for the participants the Western Muertos Trough Scenario and the Northern Panamá Scenario.  The first scenario will simulate a tsunami generated by an 8.0 Mw earthquake located in Western Muertos Trough, at 256 km west-southwest of Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico.

 

Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands Region (Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, and the British Virgin Islands) will use the Western Muertos Trough Scenario as agreed. The participant guides (official manual and guides) are the basic tools for participation in the CARIBE WAVE 2022 Exercise.

 

International participants:

The Official Participants Handbook for the Exercise prepared by the IOC (ICG/CARIBE-EWS) contains the scenarios with the information of earthquakes and tsunamis, the chronologic tables, and the international messages emitted by the PTWC for the exercise.

  • EXERCISE CARIBE WAVE 22 A Caribbean and Adjacent Region Tsunami Warning Exercise 10 March 2022 (Western Muertos Trough & Northern Panama Scenarios) Volume 1 Participant Handbook (English only) 

 

Puerto Rico and the Virgin Island participants:

This official Caribe Wave 2022 Communication Exercise web page contains all the instructions for Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands Region participants, and official messages emitted by the RSPR based on the domestic products emitted by the PTWC for our region (Puerto Rico, United States Virgin Island, and the British Virgin Islands).

Presentations (Webinars)

PRSN Presentations

The PRSN Presentations will be added soon.

International Tsunami Information Center Caribbean Office (ITIC-CAR) Presentations

CTWP 

First Series of Webinars

English – January 18, 2022

Download Presentation

Video

 

Second Series of Webinars

English – February 15, 2022

Presentation

Video

 

Download the Levels of Messaging for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands Poster by clicking on the image.

Tsunami Alerts

The Tsunami Level Alerts for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands were developed by the NTWC and is focused on informing the risk level of a tsunami happening, in this case, in Puerto Rico and/or the Virgin Islands.

The alert levels are divided into 4 color coded categories, each respective to it’s own category.

  • Warning – Red
  • Advisory – Orange
  • Watch – Yellow
  • Information Statement – Green

Warning

Red Alert

Danger!

Run for high ground!

Follow emergency instructions.

Advisory

Orange Alert

Possible strong and dangerous local currents.

Stay tuned for local emergency guidance.

Watch

Yellow Alert

Potential danger.

Stayed tuned for more information.

Information Statement

Green Alert

No Warning, Advisory or Watch issued.

A distant ocean basin may be in danger.

Source:

UNESCO/IOC. 2022. Exercise Caribe Wave 22. A Caribbean and Adjacent Regions Tsunami Warning Exercise, 10 March 2022 (Western Muertos Trough & Northern Panama Scenarios). Volume 1: Participant Handbook. Paris, UNESCO, IOC Technical Series No 170, Vol.1. (English only).