‘You must be ready to help yourselves’
You know things are serious when even the emergency centre evacuates to higher ground.
Porirua’s Emergency Operations Centre [EOC] shifted from its Selby Place building to a new, temporary location at Te Wananga O Aotearoa last Thursday, operations lead manager Scott Martin said.
‘‘With the increased risk of another earthquake the EOC was right in a tsunami zone and we thought it best to move.’’
All was quiet when Kapi-Mana News visited but that would change in an emergency situation, Martin said.
‘‘We’ll have 50 or 60 council staff pulled out of usual business and representatives of police, fire, marine and ambulance here.’’
While the emergency centre was ready for the next disaster people should take responsibility for their own safety and survival, particularly when it came to a tsunami threat, Martin said.
‘‘In a local earthquake we will not have time to warn everyone so people have to self evacuate.’’
He implored people to get ready to survive for at least seven days by collecting food, water and medicine for their families.
‘‘I can’t stress it enough - you need to be ready to help yourselves.’’
Wellingtonians, including Porirua, need to store enough water for seven days not three like the rest of the country.
Martin asked residents to be patient with council staff still dealing with the clean up from last weeks flood.
‘‘We still have staff in the recovery mode plus all our depot crew are out clearing slips so if people could be patient and under- stand we are prioritising a huge backlog of issues.
‘‘We’ll get out there to everyone but there’s a massive clean up going on.’’
Porirua residents should take a few minutes to visit the council’swebsite to see what tsunami zone their property is in.
If there is a long earthquake or one where you can’t stand up, people in tsunami zonesmust self evacuate.
Take car keys when you leave the office for awalk or ameeting in case you can’t get back into the building.
Stay off the phonelines after a disaster and use social media or text to let loved ones knowyou’re safe.
Have a bucket to use for a toilet. Do not flush your toilet after a disaster because the sewage pipesmay be broken.
Use empty juice or soft drink bottles to storewater in.
Start building up your food supplies - even by adding a few items a week.
At work you should have sensible shoes and a grab bag. if its going to take you a day to get home then you need enough for a day.
Never use candles during an earthquake.
Don’t let your phone battery run below30 per cent battery.
Don’t forget pets, make sure you have enough food for them as well.
Get ready to get through: Porirua’s emergency operations lead manager Scott Martin in the new premises.