‘You must be ready to help your­selves’

Kapi-Mana News - - FRONT PAGE - VIR­GINIA FAL­LON

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.’’

Ed­i­to­rial, P17

Get ready

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.

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