Does anyone remember the Penguin Scale?

UC Penguin Scale: Quigley, Sandy, Rolly, Rocky, Wobbly, Silty, Wavy, Trembly, Shakey, Quakey

UC Penguin Scale: Quigley, Sandy, Rolly, Rocky, Wobbly, Silty, Wavy, Trembly, Shakey, Quakey

Not everyone will remember these guys but this is a story worth telling…

During the 2010 and 2011 Canterbury earthquakes many people in the region came up with their own scales for measuring the strength of aftershocks. At Canterbury University we made up our own Richter-alternative called the Penguin Scale. Every time the ground shook a few of the wooden penguin ornaments (pictured above) would end up on the floor. However many penguins landed on the ground gave us our measurement and it was just amazing how accurate they were! The gang of penguins is still located on campus.

I’ve heard of other creative scales too like turtle scales and beer bottle scales. If you had your own scale I’d love to hear what it was.

Here’s a quick reminder of what to do if an earthquake occurs while you’re on campus.

  • Drop, cover, hold
  • Do not try to move while the ground is shaking
  • If outside – stay outside, do not enter buildings or facilities. Take shelter clear of buildings, trees, power lines or other potential hazards
  • When shaking has stopped, and or fire alarm has activated, evacuate building immediately if inside. If outside, go to the nearest holding area or Ilam Fields if safe to do so
  • Follow UC staff instructions
  • Await instructions from UC Security or Emergency Personnel
  • DO NOT pass back through campus
  • DO NOT isolate yourself, stay with others

The University has an Emergency Management website that you should be familiar with. If an emergency or campus closure occurs and you’re waiting for info from UC, please monitor local radio stations, your UC email and the UC website.

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