Early warning systems have limitations in terms of saving lives if they are not combined with “people-centred” networks. To be effective, early warning systems must be understandable, trusted by and relevant to the communities that they serve. Warnings will have little value unless they reach the people most at risk, who need to be trained to respond appropriately to an approaching hazard. The International Federation, therefore, gives its full support to the development of warning systems but stresses the importance of:
establishing local networks that can both receive and act on warnings and that raise awareness and educate communities to take action to ensure their safety;
utilizing local networks to develop warning systems progressively so that they meet the needs of the communities and situations for which they are designed;
taking a multi-hazard approach to ensure sustainability by providing active alert, awareness and relevance.
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