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Last modified: 22 Feb 2021 4:53pm

An aerial view of the edge of Lake Ellesmere and the coastA new report from GNS Science has shown that Selwyn is safer from tsunamis than previously thought.

The Council has revised the district’s tsunami zones in response to the report, commissioned by Environment Canterbury.

As a result, a smaller number of households are now in the evacuation zone. However, Civil Defence Manager Al Lawn says it is still important for people to be prepared in case of tsunamis and of earthquakes that can cause tsunamis.

“It’s good news for us because we’re safer from the wave than we thought, but it’s still important that people are ready. If you’re near the coast and there’s an earthquake that’s long or strong, get gone. Get off the water, get off the beach and get to higher ground.”

The Council has begun directly informing residents in the affected coastal area between the Rakaia River and Banks Peninsula of the new zones.

The report is a timely reminder of the risks we face and the need to be prepared for all emergencies, including by signing up to Selwyn Gets Ready at for email and text alerts in case of emergencies, Mr Lawn says.

“A few simple steps can help make things much more comfortable for you and your family in an emergency. Take the time now and save yourself the stress later by having an evacuation plan and an emergency kit including medications and food for pets.”

For more information on the tsunami evacuation zones visit our tsunami page. For more information on preparing for emergencies visit the national get ready website.