Reconstructing the 26 June 1917 Samoa Tsunami Disaster

A reconstruction of the 26 June 1917 Samoa Tsunami has revealed significant population and building exposure to tsunami impacts should a similar event occur in future. A collaboration between University of Portsmouth, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (Disaster Management Office), NIWA and GNS Science simulated tsunami inundation from the 1917 event and calculated the modern population and building exposure and impacts using RiskScape software. If a similar event occurred today nearly 8000 people residing in more than 1000 residential buildings could be exposed, mostly in Savai’i (71%). The findings of this study are published in Applied Sciences, and will inform emergency management planning activities for future tsunami events in Samoa.