ShakeOut, our national earthquake drill and tsuanmi hīkoi, is tomorrow!

ShakeOut, our national earthquake drill, and tsunami hīkoi is happening tomorrow at 9:30am, and there’s still time to sign up.

ShakeOut, our national earthquake drill, and tsunami hīkoi is happening tomorrow at 9:30am, and there’s still time to sign up.

Over 630,000 people across the motu are now signed up to practice the correct actions to take in an earthquake and tsunami. More than 1600 businesses, 2000 schools and 4000 households are taking part in this year’s drill.

The regional sign ups scoreboard shows Gisborne currently leading in ShakeOut signups with 23% of the region taking part. Coming in not far begin are the West Coast and Southland regions. 

Registrations are still open and NEMA’s Director of Civil Defence Emergency Management, John Price, is encouraging people to sign up their households, schools, and workplaces.

“Earthquakes can happen anywhere and anytime, so no matter where you are tomorrow, you can participate in ShakeOut. Practicing the correct actions to take in an earthquake or tsunami is a really important part of getting prepared”.

This year, ShakeOut is being held on the same day as the International ShakeOut Day, and here in New Zealand we’ll be the first country in the world to hold the drill.

Mr Price says over the last decade, hundreds of thousands of kiwis have come together to Drop, Cover, Hold and practise their tsunami hīkoi in coastal areas.

“It’s through practising ShakeOut each year, that knowing what to do in an earthquake and tsunami will become second nature, and that’ll be a huge advantage when an earthquake or tsunami happens”.

Drop, Cover and Hold is the right action to take in an earthquake. It:

  • stops you being knocked over,
  • makes you a smaller target for falling and flying objects, and
  • protects your head, neck and vital organs.

New Zealand ShakeOut 2023 is run by NEMA and co-sponsored by Toka Tū Ake EQC.

Toka Tū Ake EQC Public Education Manager, Hamish Armstrong says, it’s incredible to see so many hundreds of thousands of people sign up and take part in ShakeOut each year.

“It's a great opportunity to get our whānau, our friends, and workplaces thinking about how we can be better prepared.  

“It's also a chance for people to think about taking easy steps to make their homes safer for hazards like earthquakes. Actions like fastening tall and heavy furniture and appliances and securing breakables with Blu Tack or Quake Wax - these are great steps to start with. And any effort we make now will make a big difference in the future," says Mr Armstrong.  

The National Emergency Management Agency and Toka Tū Ake EQC will be livestreaming the ShakeOut drill from Mulberry Grove School on Aotea - Great Barrier Island. The livestream will be available on the Get Ready website  on Thursday 19 October from 9:25am.

New Zealand ShakeOut is based on the Great California ShakeOut, which started in 2008 and continues to have millions of participants every year. ShakeOut events are held annually across 46 countries to help educate people on how to keep safe during an earthquake. The first national New Zealand ShakeOut was held in 2012 and has been an annual event in New Zealand since 2018.

There’s still time to sign up for ShakeOut and go into the draw to win a Civil Defence wheelie bin or grab bag!

Visit the Get Ready website to find out what to do before, during and after an emergency.

Visit Toka Tū Ake EQC’s website to make your home safer for you, your family or your flatmates.

Published: Oct 18, 2023, 10:22 AM