Tsunami Quests


[MUSIC PLAYING] Along the coast
Oregon Sea Grant has been helping residents
prepare for a major earthquake and tsunami. One way it does this
is by teaching people to create and use
guided evacuation routes modeled after a treasure hunt. In these hunts, which
are called quests, walkers follow a map and a
series of educational clues about their surroundings
to reach higher ground. At the end they
find a hidden box that contains a guest
book and a rubber stamp to mark their accomplishments. The aim is that by exploring
these routes for fun in their free time residents
and visitors will later know where to flee in
the event of a tsunami. At workshops in Astoria,
Charleston, and Newport Oregon Sea Grant’s Cait
Goodwin has taught people how to create these
evacuation routes. Today’s Tsunami Quest workshop
involved lots of people from the local community. The idea was to bring the people
together and talk about tsunami preparedness, and
what people need to know when they come
to visit the coast. And then to use the quest
format to share the information with the public. I think the most
useful part of the day was actually getting
out and building a mini version of a quest. When I work with a group
of high school students later this spring, having the
background information of how the questions and the
clues are developed will help me direct
my students better when they start developing
their own questions and clues for the quest in our town. In Newport, a tsunami
evacuation quest was created by local
seventh graders. It starts at Hatfield
Marine Science Center and leads walkers
up Safe Haven Hill. Quests, however, can be created
not just for tsunami evacuation routes, but simply to get
people to explore the outdoors and their communities. These clue directed hunts, which
can really be on any topic, whether it’s that cool old tree
or the art deco architecture or the cemetery with
the historical pioneers. And right now we’re talking
about taking that format and using it to practice
an evacuation where we walk and talk about tsunamis. Oregon Sea Grant brought
the concept of quests to Oregon in 2007. Since then volunteers
have created about two dozen coastal quests. They’re compiled in a book
that you can buy at bookstores and other retailers. To find locations
of these stores visit the Hatfield Marine
Science Center’s website and search for quests. [MUSIC PLAYING]

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