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Telecommunication plays an increasingly important role in effective disaster response, whether it be through satellite weather forecasting systems that warn of an approaching cyclone, portable radio equipment that supports split-second coordination of rescue teams in the event of a major disaster, or on-the-ground communication links between aid workers distributing food, searching for victims or trying to reunite broken families. ITU’s strong commitment to enhancing the vital role of telecommunications in disaster response led to its playing a crucial role in developing the 1998 Tampere Convention on the Provision of Telecommunication Resources for Disaster Mitigation and Relief Operations. With the number of natural and man-made disasters around the world growing each year, work in this important area continued in 2000 with the publication of a Handbook on disaster communications aimed at policy-makers responsible for disaster communications planning and managers responsible for operations. In addition, the Union approved a new Recommendation on the effective utilization of amateur radio services in disaster relief operations.


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Updated : 2002-04-08