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Community invited to Tsunami evacuation modelling talk

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Members of the Lower Hutt community are invited to a free public talk at 7pm on Tuesday. 15 October at the Petone Central Bowling Club to see the latest computer tsunami evacuation models for this area.

The models show how long it may take people to get to safe locations and can be used to plan quicker and safer evacuations.

Researchers from GNS Science, Massey University, East Coast LAB and University of Canterbury will share the research as part of a two-year project called ‘Quicker Safer Tsunami Evacuations’.

The project will help to identify safer and quicker tsunami evacuation routes for communities that live and work in tsunami prone areas.  

The models simulate the movement of people who have self-evacuated on foot, following a long or strong earthquake that could have caused a large tsunami. They show likely congestion areas during a daytime and night-time scenario and look at options such as vertical evacuation. 

Dr William Power, a tsunami modeller at GNS Science, says the members of the project team would like to thank those who participated in the earlier workshops as their feedback was instrumental to improving the models.

Jeremy Holmes, Regional Manager at the Wellington Region Emergency Management Office (WREMO), said the models really highlight the importance of everyone living and working in tsunami evacuation zones knowing how to evacuate quickly and safely following a long or strong earthquake, by foot or by bike.

“It is also important that people walk their evacuation route and consider any hazards that may that may appear after an earthquake such as fallen power lines or damaged bridges.”

“This year’s ShakeOut and Tsunami Hīkoi at 1.30pm on 17 October provides a great opportunity for people living and working in tsunami prone areas to not only practice their drop, cover and hold but to walk or bike their evacuation route.”   

WREMO staff will be available at the event to answer any questions about tsunami preparedness and planning.

The models have been created by researchers and scientists from GNS Science, Massey University, East Coast LAB (Life at the Boundary) and the University of Canterbury.

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