Evacuation potential in SW Washington communities from Cascadia tsunami hazards

A new article in the journal Natural Hazards documents variations in population exposure in coastal communities of Pacific and Grays Harbor counties to Cascadia-related tsunami hazards as a function of modeled pedestrian travel time to safety. Results suggest that successful evacuations may be possible in some communities assuming slow walking speeds, are plausible in others if travel speeds are increased, and are unlikely in another set of communities given the large distances and short time horizon. Communities can use these results to help prioritize tsunami risk-reduction efforts, such as education and training in areas where evacuations are plausible and vertical-evacuation strategies in areas where they currently are not.

More information can be found at http://www.springerlink.com/content/a6177520x5k6080t/ or by emailing the lead author at nwood@usgs.gov.

Oregon Earthquake Energy Assurance Project Report

Oregon state agencies, Department of Energy, Public Utility Commission, and Department of Geology and Mineral Industries (DOGAMI) completed the Oregon Energy Assurance Project, including the DOGAMI earthquake risk study in Oregon’s Critical Energy Infrastructure (CEI) Hub. This study focused on the risk to Oregon’s energy sector, raised awareness of the risk and encouraged mitigation.  Please find DOGAMI’s report  at co-author Scott Miles’ link at: http://www.wwu.edu/huxley/resilience/Publications/DOGAMI_CEI_Hub_report.pdf.

Italians Learn that even a Moderate Earthquake can Disrupt Businesses

A magnitude 6.0 earthquake struck northern Italy on the morning of Sunday, May 20, 2012. Many masonry buildings were damaged, including some historic churches and castles. This region is also home to Italy’s Parmesan cheese industry and the earthquake toppled aging racks; 300,000 wheels of cheese are feared lost (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/may/22/italy-earthquake-hits-parmesan-cheese-production). Moderate earthquakes can have significant business impacts. CREW has publications relevant for business preparedness; for mitigation information check out the QuakeSmart Toolkit.

New Findings on CSZ Pre-historic EQ History

Oregon State University Professor Chris Goldfinger and colleagues published a paper with new scientific findings on the Cascadia subduction zone’s pre-historic earthquake history, and probabilities for future earthquakes. Download USGS Professional Paper 1661-F.