Don’t be scared, be prepared

I like science and I’m always interested in reading about some study revealing more about the history of the Alpine Fault or showing in detail what happened during the Kaikoura quake. These studies are interesting to science geeks like me, but they aren’t just for entertainment, they’re about assessing risks and preparing for them.

Six years after Christchurch’s most damaging quake and four months into Kaikoura’s post-quake phase, New Zealanders are a bit more aware of the need to prepare for all the natural disasters we face. There’s the Get Thru website, the Long or strong, get gone message being put out following the widespread confusion following the Kaikoura quake, and reports on what would happen if a volcano erupted in Auckland. Yes, scary stuff.

Sometimes people don’t want to hear about these things because they feel there’s no point, that natural disasters are unpredictable and there’s nothing you can do about them. But scientists and authorities aren’t trying to scare us, they’re trying to prepare us. Although we can’t avoid the natural disaster (except by moving somewhere where there are none), we can prepare for them. That’s what anchoring stuff to walls and emergency kits are all about: being prepared. If the worst doesn’t happen, that’s great, but if it does, isn’t it best to have what you and your family need right there, ready for you?

Another thing we can do is to document your property, so you have before and after pics to use when making your insurance claim. More on that in Is it historic? Or is it quake damage?