Between 2008 and 2014, the Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris (IPGP) and the University of the West Indies, Seismic Research Centre (UWI‐SRC) designed and built a regional seismic network across the Lesser Antilles. One of the goals of the network is to provide real‐time seismic data to the tsunami warning centers in the framework of the Intergovernmental Coordination Group working toward the establishment of a tsunami and other coastal hazards early warning system (ICG‐CARIBE‐EWS) for the Caribbean and adjacent regions (McNamara et al., 2016). In an area prone to hurricanes, earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions, we chose different techniques and technologies to ensure that our cooperated network could survive and keep providing data in case of major natural hazards. The Nanometrics very small aperture terminal (VSAT) technology is at the heart of the system. It allows for duplicated data collection at the three observatories (Trinidad, Martinique, and Guadeloupe; Anglade et al., 2015).

In 2017, the network design and implementation were put to the test with Saffir–Simpson category 5 hurricanes Irma and Maria that went, respectively, through the north and central portion of the Lesser Antilles, mainly impacting the sites operated by volcanological and seismological observatories of IPGP in Martinique (Observatoire Volcanologique et Sismologique de Martinique [OVSM]) and in Guadeloupe (Observatoire Volcanologique et Sismologique de Guadeloupe [OVSG]). Our concepts proved to be valid with a major data shortage of less than 12 hr and only two stations having sustained heavy damage.

In this article, we review the strengths and weaknesses of the initial design and discuss various steps that can be taken to enhance the ability of our cooperated network to provide timely real‐time seismic data to tsunami warning centers under any circumstances.

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