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Rohrabacher Introduces Tsunami Detection Legislation

Aug 1, 2014

WASHINGTON – Rep. Dana Rohrabacher and Rep. Suzanne Bonamici, D-OR, on Thursday introduced a bill to strengthen tsunami detection and warning systems. The measure aims to improve protection of communities vulnerable to the destructive ocean waves.

“I'm proud to cosponsor the Tsunami Warning, Education, and Research Act of 2014,” said the California Republican. “We have seen time and again the devastating impacts that tsunami events can have. We must learn more about tsunami events, provide better and more accurate tsunami forecasting, and reduce impacts on at-risk communities. This legislation will do that, and help us make certain that all of America's coastal communities are adequately prepared and properly warned for any tsunami event, all in a fiscally responsible manner.”

The legislation is supported by Rep. Lamar Smith, R-TX, chairman of the Science, Space, and Technology Committee and Ranking Member Eddie Bernice Johnson, D-TX. It strengthens the tsunami warning system’s ability to forecast tsunami arrival and damage estimates.

The bill boosts the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s hazard mitigation program through additional technical and financial assistance to communities, also establishing a working group to provide advice on tsunami science and technology.

 “Three years ago, the world witnessed the overwhelming power and destruction of a tsunami when Japan experienced a massive earthquake off its coast,” said Rep. Bonamici. “The waves caused by the Tohoku earthquake near Japan reached as far as the West Coast of the United States and caused damage to the coast in my home state of Oregon and the coast of California. This bill helps to address the risk faced by communities on both coasts and in the Gulf of Mexico by improving our mitigation and research program and enhancing community outreach and planning.”

Rohrabacher is vice chairman of the Science, Space, and Technology Committee.