Council’s tsunami planning has been informed by leading tsunami research. We know where a maximum-credible tsunami is predicted to go, how deep it will be and how quickly it could arrive.
A strong or long earthquake is the first warning that a tsunami might be on the way. Do not wait for official warnings to evacuate. If there is an official warning, then evacuate from the zones as stated in the warning.
Use these maps to plan your own evacuation route. Each map reflects our best knowledge for that area at the time of publication. The evacuation maps are based on a modelled 14m high tsunami wave.
The sooner you can get away from the red and orange zones the better. The blue arrows on the maps show the fastest routes to walk to safety.
Tsunami evacuation map 1 - Mount (899kb pdf) Tsunami evacuation map 2 - Arataki (Bayfair) (3mb pdf)
Tsunami evacuation map 3 - Papamoa (3mb pdf) Tsunami evacuation map 4 - Wairakei (Papamoa East) (3mb pdf)
Tsunami evacuation map 5 - Matua (6mb pdf) Tsunami evacuation map 6 - Welcome Bay (5mb pdf)
Tsunami safe zone – the green areas are safe from a tsunami because they are sufficiently high or inland. Safe areas within the yellow evacuation zone are identified with a safe location icon. If you are in the green zone, you don’t need to evacuate to higher ground. You may wish to open your home to family or friends who need to evacuate.
Red exclusion zone – this is the highest risk zone covering the beach and adjacent low-lying areas most likely to be affected by all sizes of tsunami. It is the first place that should be evacuated from in all types of tsunami warnings (i.e. natural or official).
Orange zone – this zone may need to be evacuated if there was a threat from a medium-to-large scale tsunami. Alerts and evacuation advice will be issued by Civil Defence for evacuation of the orange (including red) zone.
Yellow zone – Covers the largest area that would need to be evacuated in the event of a maximum-impact tsunami (the worst case modelling of a Kermadec trench M9 earthquake). It could take as little as 50 minutes for this tsunami to reach our coast plus maybe another 30 minutes for it to flood the yellow zone. Alerts and evacuation advice will be issued by Civil Defence for evacuation of the yellow (including red and orange) zone.
If told to evacuate any zone, you should stay out until you’re officially told by CDEM it’s safe to go back. This could be for hours.
Last Reviewed: 03/02/2020