Summary of the workshop on "Communication strategies between Volcano Observatories and the Volcanic Ash Advisory Centres in Europe".
On 5-7 February 2019, the UK Met Office hosted a EUROVOLC workshop to bring together the Volcano Observatories (VOs), Volcanic Ash Advisory Centres (VAACs) and Volcanological Research Institutes (VRI) in Europe. This activity came under the EUROVOLC Networking Activity “Connecting the volcanological community with VAACs” within Work Package 4, which is centred on networking atmospheric gas and aerosol observations. The workshop brought together ~35 leading scientists and operational staff from six of Europe’s VOs (Iceland, Italy, France, Spain, Portugal, and Greece) and the London and Toulouse VAACs. Seven other supporting institutions and organisations also participated.
The invited participants took part in a mixture of talks, discussions and scenario-based activities to strengthen links and coordinate interactions between the volcano observatories and the VAACs for improved crisis response. This was the first time that a dedicated meeting had been held to bring together all of the European volcano observatories with the two VAACs.
The workshop identified how VOs, VRIs and VAACs currently communicate and share information, limitations within these procedures and positive ways these could be improved. Key recommendations for future improvements in the communication procedures were defined. These include clarifying the guidance on the use of the VONA (Volcano Observatory Notice for Aviation), the need for the VONA to be sent to both the lead and back-up VAAC during events for improved back-up response, and archiving the VONAs on VO’s websites. It was agreed that two-way feedback between VAACs and VOs is essential, and the VAACs should include the notification of the VOs in their back-up procedures, as well as introducing as standard a debrief process between the relevant VAAC and VO after major events. In quiet time, regular sharing of scenario information and summary status reports will improve knowledge at the VAACs. It was recognised that it is important for all VOs to participate in exercises, and for both VOs and VAACs to use exercises as opportunities to test the implementation of these recommendations and revisions to procedures.
The workshop was a resounding success with all attendees saying that it had improved their knowledge of the roles and work of the European VOs, as well as their awareness and understanding of the International Civil Aviation Organization procedures for volcanic ash. Over 95% of participants agreed that it had improved their knowledge of how the European VAACs operate and communicate. A follow up workshop to review progress and continue fostering these connections was recommended as one of the outcomes.
Further details on the workshop are described in report D4.4
Advertise for the workshop in the UK Met Office Building in February 2019
Communication strategies between Volcano Observatories and the Volcanic Ash Advisory Centres in Europe
On 5-7 February 2019, the UK Met Office is hosting a Eurovolc workshop to bring together the Volcano Observatories and Volcanic Ash Advisory Centres (VAAC) in Europe. This activity falls under the Eurovolc Networking Activity “Connecting the volcanological community with VAACs”. The workshop will bring together ~40 leading scientists and operational staff from all of Europe’s volcano observatories and the London and Toulouse Volcanic Ash Advisory Centres (VAACs).
Invited participants will take part in a mixture of talks, discussions and scenario activities to strengthen links and coordinate interactions between the volcano observatories and the VAACs for improved crisis response. This will be the first time that a dedicated meeting has been held to bring together multiple volcano observatories with the two VAACs.
- Enhance awareness of the roles of the different operational institutions.
- Enhance awareness amongst the volcano observatories of the International Civil Aviation Organization procedures.
- Define and harmonize avenues of communication and data-sharing and possible protocols for these interactions.
- Develop and build new collaborations between the observatories and VAACs.
- Produce a roadmap for future changes and improvements.
5-7 February 2019
The workshop has been carried out. A report on its outcomes can be read here: Outcome of the VAAC-WS workshop