Tsunami hazard mitigation for West Sumatra

The 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami caused by the Great Sumatra-Andaman earthquake was the first natural calamity that covered such large areas in modern times.

Several recent studies indicate that the unbroken Mentawai segment may already be at an advanced stage in the seismic supercycle and there exists a high probability of a great earthquake rupture along the subduction megathrust under the Mentawai Islands of West Sumatra in the near future ( Sieh, et al. 2008).

To prepare for such an event, we started this project three years ago, aiming to combine our understanding of tsunami science with effective engineering measures so as to reduce possible damage to infrastructures and loss of life in areas along tsunami vulnerable coasts. The western Sumatra and Mentawai coasts were chosen as our primary case-study area for the past four years.