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Civil Defence cancels Tsunami Advisory

9:39pm WedsAll tsunami advisories for New Zealand now cancelled.

The National Advisory: Tsunami Potential Marine and Beach Threat issued by MCDEM earlier today in response to the Santa Cruz Islands earthquake and local tsunami has now been cancelled.

The threat to most areas of New Zealand’s coast has now passed. However, a minor threat still remains on the West Coast from Taranaki to Milford Sound for the next 24 hours.

Advice from GeoNet Tsunami Expert Panel is that there may be unusual water conditions e.g. local tidal surges and strong currents, especially during the early hours of Thursday 7 February.

People should exercise caution and discretion before entering the water or going out in small boats.

– NZ Civil Defence


Mark on 6/02/2013 4:54am

The far north is the Aupouri Peninsular not the Ahuriri Peninsular.

sw on 6/02/2013 3:59am

Radio Hauraki mentioned a threat.

Guest on 6/02/2013 3:46am

Could you please clarify the difference between Tsunami watch and threat – is a threat between a watch and a warning, or rhe same as a warning? Thank you!

WW Forecast Team on 6/02/2013 4:18am

We have been over this with Civil Defence in Wellington a number of times, but so far they aren’t interested in actioning any ideas we have on improving communication.  A watch and a threat are basically the same thing – it means there is the CHANCE of a tsunami, but there is still a lot of uncertainty.  A warning is when officials believe the threat is very high of a destructive tsunami.

To make matters more confusing there is the international Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre who are always first to issue warnings and watches – then usually an hour later NZ Civil Defence will issue their official advisory.  Often first it’s a ‘threat’ – which is like a watch.  Then sometimes a warning, or marine warning.

To make it even more confusing – national Civil Defence, based in Wellington, can issue national threats and warnings but local councils/civil defence can issue their own warnings and watches.  So while national CD says "threat only" we have local Taranaki Civil Defence issuing a "tsunami warning" – as we saw today. 

Work to be done in this area and we would love to work proactively with national Civil Defence, just as we do with Auckland Civil Defence, who we believe lead all the other Civl Defence organisations when it comes to communicating effectively to the public.


Philip Duncan

Guest on 6/02/2013 4:51am

Thanks for the clarification and explaining the terms. I hope the Civil Defence will work with you, as you guys at Weatherwatch issued the most reliable and constant updates for the public today. I also think it would be very helpful if Civil Defence had a facebook page of their own as it seems that is a very fast way to spread news, good or bad. Many thanks for keeping us updated so professionally and accurately.

Guest on 6/02/2013 3:21am

Well done guys, I note no mention on Metservice as per usual. Surely they should be leading the story. Good scoop for you boys


Guest on 6/02/2013 3:59am

I wouldn’t call it a ‘sccop’ when it it’s a potentially life threatening event. It’s not a competition. have a banner referring people to the appropriate organisation monitoring it.

WW Forecast Team on 6/02/2013 4:12am

Competition is good if it means we’re competing to be the first to accurately warn the public of threats.  MetService never used to warn of tsunami until started it a few years ago so competition is good.

Fantastic to see MetService linking to appropriate sites – as the govt site this should’ve been happening since day one.


Philip Duncan

Bigger then usual on 6/02/2013 9:02am

Yep sweet guys you rule, we had a listen to VHF channel 21 at Tindalls bay this arvo, as some good person informed us or a potential threat and we moved off the beach just in case…

As you say is a warning a threat ,an alert, a watch, an outlook, or maybe something that could be of interest to flock to the beachs and check it out!!!

Just one day we will no!!

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