Tsunami Evacuation Simulation for Banda Aceh

By Johannes Loh, on July 26th, 2011

The Banda Aceh-based Tsunami & Disaster Mitigation Research Center (TDMRC) , under the Syiah Kuala University, has developed a series of computer-driven simulations to monitor evacuation effectiveness in the event of another tsunami.

ATM team with TDMRC staff 150x150 Tsunami Evacuation Simulation for Banda Aceh picture

The ATM team visited TDMRC's office in Banda Aceh

Drawing upon scenarios that vary the number and passenger-capacity of evacuation routes, access to evacuation shelters, and pre-landfall alert timing, the simulations forecast the number of Banda Aceh residents in this target area that would successfully find shelter, as well as how many would become tsunami casualties. As anticipated, they find that providing earlier warnings in the simulation raises the percentage of tsunami survivors, but that a significant number of fatalities will still be caused because of a shortage of tsunami-resilient, tall buildings and standing infrastructure not yet conducive to large-scale movement of people.

The four scenarios featured in the video are as follows:

Case 1: No tsunami alarm is sounded. People start running in the last minutes.
Case 2: Many casualties due to traffic congestion. Tsunami siren 10 minutes after the earthquake.
Case 3: Use of “safe buildings”. Tsunami siren 10 minutes after the earthquake.
Case 4: Everyone evacuates towards the city. Tsunami siren 10 minutes after the earthquake.

The simulations can be used by planners and disaster risk reduction professionals to better prepare Banda Aceh, a disaster-prone area, against future natural disasters.

There is more about disaster reconstruction and disaster risk reduction in the current issue of the newest issue of the ATM Bulletin. You can download Bulletin 10: Aceh Recovery and Reconstruction here.

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