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Hikurangi magnitude 9 planning workshop in Gisborne next week

Wednesday 14 September, 2022

A regional workshop supported by international and national experts is being held in Gisborne next week.

It will focus on what happens after a magnitude 9 earthquake and tsunami hit this region.

The three-day event hosted by Tairāwhiti Emergency Management brings tsunami specialists and scientists from around New Zealand. They will join representatives from National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), regional agencies and emergency services, with 60 people registered so far.

Tairāwhiti has a significant chance of a major earthquake in the Hikurangi Subduction Zone off the East Coast in the next 50 years.

Tairāwhiti Emergency Management manager Ben Green says this workshop will focus on what is expected to happen during a magnitude 9 earthquake and tsunami, and planning for after the event.

“This workshop session will look at a number of areas including the immediate post-disaster impact and recovery planning for the city. This is a complex planning scenario.”

It’s hoped outcomes from the workshop will look at a number of key considerations for such a major event and it will set the conditions for the regional tsunami plan.

Mr Green says specialists will be asked to discuss where the priority for future planning and workstreams will be needed including strategic investment for emergency management.

Part of the workshop includes a visit to Tītīrangi to see an aerial view of the bay, port and city.

The workshop is being held at the Lawson Filed Theatre from Monday 19 to Wednesday 21 September.

Next month is also the national earthquake preparedness campaign ‘ShakeOut’.

The annual event encourages everyone to practice their earthquake drill wherever they are at 9.30am, Thursday 27 October.

“A well-prepared region will save lives. Last year Tairāwhiti topped the number of registrations in the country per capita. Let’s do it again,” says Mr Green.

Register for this year’s ShakeOut and go in the draw for a Civil Defence grab bag.

Hikurangi Subduction Zone