Province hands out money for tsunami preparedness

  • Jan. 19, 2005 5:00 p.m.

The provincial government is handing out $20,000 to Masset, $20,000 to Port Clements and $20,000 to the regional district to help islanders prepare for a tsunami.
The Charlottes, along with communities on the west coast of Vancouver Island and the central and north coasts, are considered to be at high risk in case of tsunami. Twenty-four communities in this area are receiving $20,000 grants from Victoria.
The money can be used to identify risks, develop plans, upgrade communications and warning systems and support public education.
Kim Mushynsky, chair of Masset’s emergency committee, said Masset will wait and see what restrictions the province puts on the grant before deciding how to spend it. The village would like to buy a large trailer which could be towed by a half-ton truck and fill it with non-perishable emergency supplies. In case of an evacuation, the trailer could be hooked up and brought along. It could also be towed to a disaster site, Ms Mushynsky explained.
The village is not sure how much such a trailer would cost, she said, because it has never had enough spare money to consider buying one.
Lower-risk communities on the south coast are receiving grants of $10,000 each for tsunami awareness and public education.
The provincial government is also holding three conference-call workshops this week for community leaders and emergency planners to discuss the tsunami threat and potential impact on our coast. The workshop for the north coast and Haida Gwaii is being held this afternoon (Jan. 20). Info from the workshop – which includes presentations on potential impacts, predictability of tsunamis, and provincial warning systems – will be available to the public at www.pep.bc.ca