Tsunami zone maps re­leased

Clutha Leader - - FRONT PAGE - MARY-JO TO­HILL

Les­sons learned from the Novem­ber Kaik­oura earth­quake, which pro­duced panic and con­fu­sion re­gard­ing tsunami warn­ings in coastal Otago, has re­sulted in the re­lease of evac­u­a­tion maps.

Otago Civil Defence Emer­gency Man­age­ment held a brief­ing at Dunedin on Tues­day to for­mally re­lease the tsunami evac­u­a­tion zone maps, which will give coastal Otago peo­ple more cer­tainty about which ar­eas they should leave when a tsunami threat­ens.

The de­tailed maps show three zones, coloured red, or­ange and yel­low, and can be viewed on any com­puter or mo­bile de­vice. (See map page 11.)

They should also pro­vide a level re­as­sur­ance to peo­ple about when to get out of low-ly­ing ar­eas, and how far they would have to move to reach safety, Otago Civil Defence Emer­gency Man­age­ment group con­troller Chris Hawker, said. The maps al­lowed peo­ple who lived or worked along the coast to be bet­ter pre­pared in the event of a tsunami. They built on the na­tional tsunami aware­ness cam­paign, with its ‘‘Long, Strong – Get Gone’’ mes­sage, based on the nat­u­ral warn­ing signs of pro­longed and se­vere shak­ing.

‘‘Last Novem­ber when we had the tsunami warn­ing after the Kaik­oura earth­quake, there was a lot of con­fu­sion about who should evac­u­ate and where they ought to go. The map­ping project will give peo­ple much more cer­tainty about what they should pre­pare for.’’

‘‘We’re ex­pect­ing that the re­lease of these maps will get a lot of peo­ple think­ing about what this means for them.’’

Clutha District Emer­gency Man­age­ment Of­fi­cer Bren­don Smith wel­comed the pub­li­ca­tion of the tsunami evac­u­a­tion zone maps, which would be a valu­able ad­di­tion to the com­mu­nity re­sponse plans al­ready in place in coastal Otago. This would help as­sist with the de­vel­op­ment of re­sponse plans for oth­ers, he said.

‘‘It means both civil defence teams and the pub­lic are bet­ter in­formed, which lets ev­ery­one make bet­ter de­ci­sions in an emer­gency.’’

Smith en­cour­aged ev­ery­one liv­ing or work­ing on the Clutha coast to check out the evac­u­a­tion zones and the FAQs on Emer­gency Man­age­ment Otago’s web­site.

Pub­lic meet­ings will also be held for Clutha’s coastal com­mu­ni­ties to dis­cuss the maps in the com­ing months.

Tsunami evac­u­a­tion zone map.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.