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Understanding Human Behaviour During & Following Earthquakes


Thu 11 Oct 2018, 6:00pm–7:00pm

Where: Lower Hutt War Memorial Library, Cnr Queens Drive and Woburn Road, Lower Hutt, Wellington Region

Restrictions: All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Admission: Free

Listed by: HuttCityLibraries

Seeing is believing, or so they say. GNS Science presents a new seminar series on unseen science that is helping shape the future direction of science in New Zealand. Join us on an adventure to find out about the science we can’t see!

Globally, little research has analysed the immediate human responses to earthquake shaking. Human behaviour and injury data from the large Canterbury Earthquake Sequence in 2010/11 identified three main influences on human behaviour during earthquake shaking.

The first influence is the human environment during the quake, such as inner-city building, in bed at home, or outside. Second, who an individual is with at the time of the earthquake will affect their behaviour.

For example, an adult with a small child will behave differently than an adult alone. Third, an individual’s behaviour during shaking is also influenced by their age, gender, previous earthquake experience, and the size of the earthquake. David Johnston will explain how different human behaviours can either help survival, or increase the risk of injury or even worse, death.

David Johnston GNS Science/Massey University) is a social scientist who contributes to improving emergency response systems to protect citizens during natural hazards.