Factors influencing tsunami life safety were examined using 1,153 witnesses in the tsunami-inundated areas in the 2011 Tohoku-oki earthquake and tsunami. It was found that evacuation starting time, evacuation location conditions, age and occupation had the greatest influence on survival. Moreover, the data for 101 localities were employed to estimate the fatality rate as a function of the tsunami height, arrival time, evacuation distance, elderly fraction of the community (percentage of people over 65 years old) and types of topography (ria coast versus flat plain). The results provide lessons that communities threatened by tsunami need to develop integrated disaster preparedness, taking into account evacuation behavior, refuge siting, the topography, and community age distribution.
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