20-20-20 principle to deal with tsunami threat

JAKARTA: The public need not worry about a tsunami threat along Java’s southern coast if they take mitigation measures to minimise the impact of disasters, VNA quoted Indonesian agencies as having said following rising concerns about the phenomenon.

National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) spokesperson Agus Wibowo urged the public to remain cautious, adding that several mitigation measures could be taken in the case of a potential tsunami-triggering earthquake, such as the 20-20-20 principle.

If the tremors of an earthquake last 20 seconds, evacuate as soon as possible because a tsunami may come in 20 minutes; take shelter at a building that it is at least 20 metres in height, The Jakarta Post quoted Agus as saying.

Another important mitigation effort is constructing anti-earthquake buildings, he added.

He also suggested downloading the InaRisk application, which is accessible on the BNPB’s website, for further information and warnings on potential natural disasters.

The Indonesian Government has established the Expedition Destana programme, in which teams are sent to villages located along Java’s southern coast to teach residents about disaster mitigation.

Daryono, head of earthquake information and early tsunami warning under the Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysics Agency (BMKG), said the southern coast of Java was more prone to these natural disasters due to the subduction zone between the Eurasian and Indo-Australian plates.

He said there were several mitigation steps people could take, such as marking beach space that is safe from tsunamis and developing the public’s capacity in facing disasters.

Widjo Kongko, a tsunami expert from the Assessment and Application of Technology Agency (BPPT), said on July 17 that Java’s southern coast, particularly Yogyakarta, could experience an 8.8-magnitude earthquake and a tsunami of up to 20 metres in height, the newspaper reported.

A subduction zone runs along the southern coast of Java to the east of Sumba Island and south of the Sunda strait, he added. – Bernama