The National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) has deployed a team to Aneityum yesterday to assess the full impact of the tsunami unleashed by the 7.6 magnitude earthquake that struck Loyalty Island on Wednesday this week.

The team comprised of officers from the Agriculture Sector, Water, Fisheries, Health, Education, Public Works and Infrastructure including Tafea Provincial Government Council, NDMO and Geo-Hazards.

Two officers from the Geo-Hazards Team will assess the environmental impacts and will also measure the tsunami’s inundation in the area, which covers collecting valuable data on the number and measurements of waves.

The other team will conduct a scientific study and will also focus on the social and economic impacts.

They are expected to submit their report to NDMO once they return to Port Vila today (Friday) afternoon.

It has been reported that that the island has suffered from the effects of the tsunami. Villagers on ground conveyed that the waves from the tsunami damaged residential dwellings, gardens and school facilities.

While confirming the deployment of the multi-sectoral assessment team yesterday, the Manager of Disaster Operations at NDMO, Peter Korisa, said these impacts reported are only minor, according to information relayed to NDMO from Aneityum.

Little effect of the tsunamis was felt on Mystery Island, only debris that were found along the coast including minor damage to tourist facility, he said.

“The jetty is not damaged. The airport is fine and operational as well as communication. Community clean-up has begun to get the island ready for cruise ship next week,” he said.

The public has shared surprise at the tsunamis since no alert of it has been issued.

There were no casualty but events like this reflect a lack of advanced tsunami detection system in Vanuatu.

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